Kamil from City of Glasgow College won gold in our Network Infrastructure Technician competition in 2019. He explains why preparation for competitions is so important and why he wants to share the knowledge he has gained from his experiences with others.
Kamil gained independence at a young age and moved on his own to Scotland to study when he was sixteen. He thinks that this early separation from the norm and plunging into the unknown developed a sense of self-motivation right at the beginning of his career journey. He chose to go into college and do a technical course because he is a very technical and practical person. “I see a great value in practical skills that can be used to create and improve our future”.
Kamil heard about WorldSkills UK Competitions from his college tutor and he competed in the Network Infrastructure Technician competitions in 2019, reaching the National Finals and winning a gold medal in the process.
The importance of preparation
When asked about how he coped with the extreme environment of the finals at the NEC, with 70,000 attendees milling about and watching him compete, Kamil says it is all about preparation:
You have to prepare very, very well. It’s all about time management and staying calm. Obviously the stress was there with all those people watching you, and you know that you are surrounded by the best competitors in the UK – AND obviously there is a time limit so you can’t even really stop and check everything.. but you just have to be as efficient as possible and get on with it.
When asked what he would say to someone thinking about entering a WorldSkills UK competition he answered:
“I would say that it’s definitely a good decision, as the whole process of training and the competition itself will vastly contribute towards improving both the technical and the soft skills.”
Kamil found the training that the WorldSkills UK training managers gave him incredibly helpful, and said that he learnt how to change his stubbornness into a positive resilience: “I’m an optimistic person anyway, and so I took that negative trait and changed it to meant that when I set my mind to succeed, that I never give up”. He was used to working a lot on his own, so working on something in a team and having to combine all of those very specific technical skills with soft skills was a new and valuable experience.
Opportunities in technical pathways
He says he would really encourage “people to get into less “popular” technical fields.” These fields can provide people with very good opportunities as there is a huge need for staff in them. “I think that advertising the huge opportunities there are for young people in technical pathways is important, as maybe people just don’t know what is out there. This is basically what WorldSkills UK is trying to do by sending Skills Champions out to schools, which is one of the main reasons I wanted to get involved. I believe it’s a great opportunity not just for my own personal development, but for me to be able to pass on the knowledge I have gained through my experience of competitions, and share and hopefully inspire other students to think outside the box”.
Kamil says the key to staying motivated in the current climate is “to have a consistent balance. Make sure that you do some work or something productive every day. For example, I might play computer games in the evening but I will have made sure that I have done college work for at least three hours in the day – it doesn’t matter if it’s just a little, you just have to make sure you always do a bit every day.
“And don’t be too hard on yourself either – set realistic goals and then don’t try and do more than that.”