Addressing the shortage of skilled workers through vocational competitions
"The shortage of skilled workers is a challenge for companies in Europe. We need to invest much more in education and training. That is why I propose to make 2023 the European Year of Skills," said EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. The highlight of this Year of Skills will be the 8th EuroSkills competition of professions in September in Gdańsk, Poland. Mechatronics is one of the most attractive and promising skills, and it will be held on the MPS, Festo's Modular Production System.
EuroSkills takes place every two years, and this year it will be held from September 5 to 9, 2023 in Gdańsk, Poland. The competition in 43 skills is considered the European championship of professions and is organized by the umbrella organization WorldSkills Europe in collaboration with the host country Poland. It brings together hundreds of young professionals under the age of 25 who, through friendly competition, aim to become the best in their chosen profession in Europe.
Experience the Competition Live and for Free
Around 100,000 visitors from Poland and abroad are expected to attend EuroSkills Gdańsk 2023. With free admission, they will be able to see competitors in action and try out job-related activities for themselves at the numerous "try-a-skill" demonstration areas. In addition, EuroSkills provides a platform for educators, industry representatives, governments, and education leaders to share information and discuss proven as well as new applications in vocational education and training.
In this context, the mechatronics competition stands out as one of the flagships of the EuroSkills competition, because mechatronics serves as the foundation for future specializations in the fields of Industry 4.0 or robotics, and even electromobility. Festo is explicitly committed to sustainable professions of the future. Visitors to the Festo stand can also expect to see an exhibit on the subject of water and wastewater technology. Festo is official sponsor of the still young discipline Water Technology at the World Championship of Professions, as well as of the skill Renewable Energy, which was only introduced in 2022. Festo plays a vital role in promoting educational topics that support climate protection.
"At EuroSkills, Festo will once again provide officially recognized competition equipment. Last year, WorldSkills Europe awarded Festo the title of Premium Sponsor. This means that we are and will remain closely connected to the future skilled workers of Europe and their training needs," explains Tamás Siszer, Head of Sales Region Europe-Middle East-Africa at Festo Didactic.
Flagship Mechatronics Competition
In the mechatronics competition, participants solve tasks that involve the interaction of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and information technology. They create a faultlessly functioning production system by assembling individual components. A comprehensive understanding of processes and the ability to control automated production systems are prerequisites for construction. Festo Didactic continually develops the Modular Production System (MPS) in line with current technology trends and integrating new applications. The MPS serves as the official competition equipment and complies with the prescribed quality standards of WorldSkills Europe. Like the WorldSkills championship, Festo has been involved in EuroSkills from the very beginning by providing the competition equipment. Through its participation in EuroSkills, Festo contributes to alleviating the shortage of skilled workers.
Mechatronics is to technical skills what reading and writing are to language. It provides indispensable fundamental knowledge for building automated production systems. For example, the tasks on the Modular Production System include unpacking components, assembling the system with wiring, integrating hoses, sensors, cables, light barriers, workpieces, etc., programming, commissioning, and ensuring error-free production processes.
At the last national mechatronics championship in 2021 in Rohrbach, Germany, the team of two mechatronics trainees of Festo achieved second place. Daniel Schmid and Timo Osswald are now part of the German national team and will represent Germany as mechatronics apprentices at the European Championship in Gdańsk.
Festo Didactic is a leading provider of technical training and further education. The product and service portfolio offers customers integrated educational solutions in industrial automation topics. The wide range of products and services are aimed at vocational schools and universities, research centers and industrial customers. Festo Didactic is part of the globally oriented, independent family-owned company Festo with headquarters in Esslingen a. N., Germany. The 760 employees of Festo Didactic in 61 Festo national companies generated sales of EUR 140 million in 2022.