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Two Refrigeration and Air Con learners make World Skills final

Luke Haile and Peter Smith from Eastleigh College have emerged victorious in their regional heats to make the World Skills Refrigeration and Air Conditioning national final in November, as two of six competitors vying for the crown.

The Refrigeration and Air Conditioning division is one of 62 World Skills finals competitions that will be running on the week commencing Monday 14th November. Luke and Peter will be travelling up to Barking and Dagenham College for their grand final, which takes place between Wednesday 16th and Friday 18th November 2022. They will be facing competitors from across the country, including Bath, Burnley and Glasgow.

World Skills competitions are designed to raise standards and opportunities for vocational training nationwide, helping push apprentices to reach their full potential in their respective industries. Over 400 entered regional finals last year, a figure that this year’s showing is expected to surpass, with the best performers progressing to grand finals where they will receive invaluable tuition and gain networking access to a range of industry specialists. Outstanding displays in the finals could earn competitors a further place in the 2024 ‘Skills Olympics’ in Lyon, where they will have the opportunity to represent the United Kingdom on an international stage.

Luke Haile joined Eastleigh College in September 2019, where he enrolled on a full Diploma in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning, comprising of Levels 1, 2 and 3 which each last a year. He has just completed his studies and is now preparing to advance his career at Lightfoot Defence who employed him as part of his apprenticeship. Luke said: “I was delighted to receive the phone call from World Skills to say I’d reached the final – it was the perfect way to end my time at Eastleigh College. I can’t wait to develop my skillset further and am currently considering a Level 4 qualification in Engineering to begin in September, and potentially a full degree after that as well.”

Peter Smith is also enrolled on a full diploma, having just completed his Level 1, making his achievement all the more impressive in reaching the World Skills final this early in his qualification. Peter’s employer is Arcus Facilities Management whose biggest partners include Sainsburys and Co-op. He said: “It was such a nice surprise to hear the news about reaching the World Skills final. Obviously it would be great to win, but more than anything I am looking forward to gaining valuable experience and learning from professionals in my industry.”

Good luck to both Luke and Peter in November’s final!

For more information on the World Skills competitions, please visit their website here.

A full list of our Refrigeration and Air Conditioning course offerings can be found here.

For any further queries, please contact the College at