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WorldSkills Kazan 2019: the win!


11.09.2019, 07:41


The first world skills competition to be hosted in Russia was held in Kazan in August. Being the 45th such event in the history of this international movement, WorldSkills Kazan 2019 saw 1,354 young professionals from 63 countries and regions take part in the event. Russia joined the movement six years ago. The Competition gave a proof that young Russian professionals were able to achieve very high performance results in a relatively short term. Team Russia succeeded to win second place in the team event. A special pride for domestic printing industry was the gold medal in the Print Media Technology skill, for which Heidelberg was the general partner. Representing the nation, Elizaveta Stepanova shared the first place with a Competitor from Austria, while the bronze went to a member of the Swiss team.

Heidelberg and WorldSkills: long-standing partnership

Heidelberg has been a sponsor of Print Media Technology since 2006, supplying printing equipment and consumables and supporting the Competitors’ training. Thanks to all this, the world’s best printers, when engaged in the Competition with each other, can use the state-of-the-art presses from Heidelberg and its partners. At WorldSkills Kazan 2019, Heidelberg was a platinum partner for the event and a Print Media Technology skill sponsor. The Ricoh Rus, having a status of an official partner for Young Professionals/WorldSkills Russia Union, also actively participated in the preparation of the Competition.

The champion is ours!

Summing up the results of the contest in the Printing Media skill, the jury gave the gold medal to Elizaveta Stepanova, a member of Russia team. Elizaveta graduated from Moscow College for Printing and Publishing (specializing in Paper and Cardboard Products Manufacturing) to continue her education as a student of the Higher School for Printing and Media Industry in Moscow Polytechnic University. As she said, her joining the WorldSkills movement and winning gave her many good things such as unique social skill, professional knowledge, and wider circle of friends, as well as a feeling of self-assertion. “Now I know that I have spirit and skills needed to make through to the finals and win”, says Elizaveta. Shortly after the Competition, she was also offered a job as a supervisor of a training production. Elizaveta was proud to tell that she would stay in WorldSkills as a coach to train Competitors for WorldSkills 2021 in Shanghai, China.

When asked about emotions she was experiencing during training and the event, and her plans for the future she explained, “It was the most difficult for me to be waiting for who would be chosen to go to represent Russia at the world competition. Knowing nothing about what would happen, I had to be constantly practising, doing my job, and believing in my success. As to the four Competition days, sometimes it was hard to stand firm, not to give in when nothing seemed to come out of it. I had to get a grip on myself at such moments, make believe that tomorrow would be a new day, and I would handle my job well.”

“The most pleasant experience was, first, when we stood waiting, ready to come out onto the stage of the Kazan Arena Stadium at the Opening Ceremony. It is hard to express your feelings when you are standing together with your teammates, listening to the storm of applause, and feeling the energy transferred by thousands of people greeting our team,” continues Stepanova. “And, of course, my feelings were totally overwhelming during those seconds of waiting for the final results to be announced, and just at that moment I knew the gold medal was going to me.”

WorldSkills in Russia: going straight ahead

Esa Saarinen, CEO at Heidelberg-CIS, General Manager for Heidelberg Baltic Finland, participated in the award presentation for winners in the IT and Communications Technology Unit, presenting medals, including medals to printers. Summing up what he had seen at the Competition, he said, “First of all, I was impressed by all the facilities built for the event in such a short time. Secondly, I heard that the Organization (Local and WS International) worked very well and all event went without any major problems. This is a great achievement. The whole event is really like the Olympic Games, and was nice to see that Competitors also felt that, and behaved like in sports competition”.

“It was really interesting to see all possible professions participating and available for the audience,” Saarinen continues. “To show young peoples that there is an interesting future in many handicraft professions available is very important to the Industry and Service segment. Too much Media focuses today “only” on IT and related professions”.

The government in Russia continues to support the WorldSkills movement. President of Russia Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Deputy Prime Minister Tatiana Golikova, and President of the Republic of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov have visited the Competition in Kazan. According to President Putin, the goals set by the movement are topical for professional training in Russia. Channel One on TV cites Vladimir Putin’s speech in Kazan, “I know nothing more important and interesting for young people than to organize this kind of competition. We in Russia are seeking to restructure our professional education system so that it could meet the requirements of today and tomorrow.”

About WorldSkills and its partner relations with Heidelberg

WorldSkills International (WSI) is an international non-profit organization with the main goal of promoting vocational professions by conducting international competitions all over the world, as well as raising the profile and standards of vocational training and skills.

Heidelberg Group is a long-standing partner of WorldSkills International and a founding member of WorldSkills Germany. For the Competition held in Russia, Heidelberg was a platinum partner and sponsored the Print Media Technology skill as the general partner and supplier of the equipment and consumables needed.

Under the direction of the WorldSkills Experts, Competitors received training using Speedmaster SX 52 offset presses installed by the Heidelberg-CIS in the Krasin Technical School and Ivan Fedorov Moscow College for Printing and Publishing. In addition, the trainees had an opportunity to work with the Versafire EV digital press (Ricoh C7200X) installed in the Ricoh Rus office in Russia.