December 3, 2012, Leesburg, Va. – Joshua Bedell of St. Petersburg, Florida and student of Pinellas Technical Education Center (PTEC) in Clearwater, Florida, will represent the United States in Leipzig, Germany in the CNC Milling contest during the biennial WorldSkills Competition. Bedell will compete as a member of the United States “WorldTeam.” The 42nd international event will be held July 2-7, 2013.
Bedell was recently awarded the silver medal in CNC Milling in November 2012 during the WorldSkills America’s competition in Brazil where the United States competed against 23 other countries in preparation for the WorldSkills Competition.
Bedell won the right to compete by winning the college/postsecondary gold medal in CNC Milling in the SkillsUSA Championships in June 2011. He has also successfully completed other qualifying prerequisites prior to being chosen for the team.
When asked how he became involved in CNC Milling, Bedell said, “My father is a precision machinist, and that led me to taking it in high school and I found out I really enjoyed it. After I graduated from high school, I went to PTEC to learn even more about it.”
Bedell graduated high school from Dixie M. Hollins High School in St. Petersburg, Florida where he studied precision machining. When asked about Bedell’s ability to compete on an international level, his teacher, Mr. James Lewis said, “Josh was a hard worker for me and a bright young man. It won’t surprise me if he wins the international competition.”
“The international CNC Milling contest requires the completion of a project containing a minimum of three modules. Each module requires the competitor to develop a CNC program from a complex drawing using MasterCam, to set up a machining center and to machine the final part. The main challenge for a United States competitor will be to think and function in metric as opposed to the imperial standard and to achieve a large number of 3-place metric (4-place imperial) tolerance requirements,” said Frank McSherry, the technical expert and trainer for Joshua Bedell. McSherry will also be traveling to Germany with Bedell.
“This experience will give me an opportunity to really test myself as a machinist, a chance to participate in a community like no other, and a shot at showing the rest of the world what America can do,” said Bedell. “A challenge will be learning to use a machine that I haven’t touched before. It will be the same type of machine, but it will be a different brand and a different model and that will make a difference.”
During the WorldSkills CNC Milling contest, competitors must create the CNC program based on drawings with the use of a CAM system. Competitors must select and mount the tools for machining themselves. Tooling offset measurements are performed on the tool setter provided for this purpose. All data of the machining tools must be entered manually into the tool carrier of the CNC machine (tool offset). The program must be optimized and corrected by the competitor.
Every two years, hundreds of young people from 53 member countries or regions compete in the prestigious WorldSkills Competition. Member countries include: Japan, England, Saudi Arabia, Canada, Australia, Thailand, Brazil and many others. Considered “the best of the best,” contestants compete for four days in 45 occupational skill areas from economic sectors including manufacturing, information technology, transportation, construction and services. Accompanied by their teachers, trainers and industry technical committee experts, these young people compete before the public in contests that are run and judged by industry using demanding international standards.
Over its 60-year history, WorldSkills International (formerly known as the “Skill Olympics”) has come to symbolize the pinnacle of excellence in vocational training. It provides a unique means of exchange and comparison of world-class competency standards in the industrial trades and service sectors of the global economy. The continued growth of WorldSkills International attests to the fact that traditional trade and craft skills along with the newer technology multi-skilled occupations makes an essential contribution to the economic and social well being of people everywhere.
In 2013, more than 1,000 competitors will test their skills in Leipzig, Germany. Five thousand international experts, delegates and judges will gather from around the world, and 3,000 volunteers will be recruited to assist in the event. A total of 150,000 student and public spectators will attend the competition at the Leipzig Trade Fair and Exhibition Center. For more information about the competition, go to: http://www.worldskills.org or http://www.worldskillsleipzig2013.com.
Joshua Bedell is a member of SkillsUSA, the organization that represents the United States in the WorldSkills Competition. Competitors in WorldSkills must be under the age of 23. There will be a total of 20 members of WorldTeam. Other occupational areas in which the United States plans to compete include: Autobody Repair; Automobile Technology, Beauty Therapy; Bricklaying; Cabinetmaking; Car Painting; CNC Turning; Cooking; Graphic Design; Hairdressing; IT Networks Systems Administration; Mechatronics (a two-person team contest); Plumbing & Heating; Print Media Technology; Refrigeration & Air Conditioning; Restaurant Service; Web Design and Welding.
SkillsUSA helps students discover and grow their career passions. As a nationwide partnership of students, instructors and industry working together, SkillsUSA works to ensure America has a skilled workforce. It helps every student excel. The nationwide career and technical education student organization annually serves more than 320,000 high school, college and postsecondary students—and their instructors—in technical, skilled, and service occupation instructional programs. Career and technical education is learning that works for America. SkillsUSA has the active support of more than 1,100 corporations, trade associations, business and labor unions at the national level. Over 10.5 million people have been annual members of SkillsUSA since its founding as the Vocational Industrial Clubs of America in 1965. SkillsUSA programs teach leadership, citizenship and character development to complement technical skill training. The organization emphasizes respect for the dignity of work, ethics, workmanship, scholarship and safety. For more information, go to http://www.skillsusa.org