An EKC Canterbury College student has won a Gold Medal in graphic design at the WorldSkills UK National Finals, a competition that celebrates and showcases the skills of the nation’s best apprentices and students.
Level 3 Graphic Design student, Billy Baldwin, was awarded gold in the Graphic Design category of the WorldSkills UK National Competitions at an awards ceremony in Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall on Friday 17 November after impressing the judges with his design skills and talent.
Billy competed against the best design students across the UK to create website designs, social media advertisements and motion graphics for a company called Skyscanner to a brief set by media and design agency Wavemaker UK in an intense two-day competition held at Manchester College.
On the last day of the competition, Billy and his competitors were given a valuable insight into the life of a Graphic Design Executive with a visit to Wavemaker Manchester’s headquarters where they met the design team.
Speaking after his win, Billy said: “It feels crazy to win! Unreal! I was overwhelmed when they called my name out. I was relieved to reach the end after a surreal week. This is a fabulous step up for me career-wise and I get to add it to my CV to help me get a job in the industry.”
The WorldSkills UK National Finals follows six months of local and regional qualifiers which saw over 6,000 young people across the UK register to compete in a range of skills categories including construction and infrastructure, digital business and creative, engineering and technology, and health, hospitality and lifestyle.
Billy, who was entered into the competition by his tutors at EKC Canterbury College, successfully completed the local and national qualifying rounds in the Graphic Design category, after producing designs to a range of different briefs, to join over 400 young people competing in the national finals in a variety of skills areas.
Billy’s tutor, Rob Black, Programme Director for Visual Arts at EKC Canterbury College, who went to Manchester to support Billy in the finals said: “We are very proud to be celebrating Billy’s Gold medal win in Graphic Design at the 2023 WorldSkills UK National Competitions. Billy worked incredibly hard against the best design students from across the UK to design a range of products that spanned website design, social media advertisements and motion graphics for digital displays. Billy’s performance throughout the competition was exemplary and his designs clearly demonstrated his professional ability.”
Reflecting on his win, Billy said: “It was amazing to have Rob’s unwavering support and to provide me with this excellent opportunity in the first place, I couldn’t have done it without him.”