Eighteen-year-old NSW jewellery apprentice Joshua Fimognari will travel to Calgary Canada this September to compete against 18 other young jewellers from around the globe in the 40th International WorldSkills Competition.
Fimognari, an apprentice at Carina Jewellers, is one of 29 young skilled Australians who won a place on Team Australia (also know as the Skillaroos) to compete in the biennial event.
WorldSkills Australia competitions are open to all Australians under 23 years of age with trades and skills in any of 50 categories including beauty therapy, cabinetmaking, cooking, floristry, plumbing, web design and jewellery.
Fimognari said entering the WorldSkills competition had been “an absolutely amazing experience”.
“Seeing so many other young people so committed to their chosen trade was great,” he said. “My hand skills have improved greatly and my confidence on the bench is definitely increasing.”
Fimognari first became interested in a career as a jeweller when a friend showed him a pair of earrings she beaded.
“Being interested in art and design, I started beading different bits and pieces for family and friends,” he said. “One of my pieces was shown to a jeweller in Beecroft who later contacted me and offered me work experience. I soon realised that jewellery design and manufacturing was for me.”
Currently training for the September competition, Fimognari said that in the future he hoped to study in Italy for a couple of years and then return to Australia to open his own jewellery studio “making one of kind, exclusive pieces”.
WorldSkills Australia CEO Mark Callaghan said all the 29 Skillaroos were perfect skills ambassadors who can be held up as genuine role models for all Australians.
We look forward to watching their progress as they continue to display the dedication, drive and passion that has allowed them to reach this point,” he said.
“As a nation we need to continue to strive for skills excellence,” he said.
“It is skills excellence that will ultimately improve individual and organisational success as well as improving performance and productivity.”