Skills exhibition to showcase talents from various fields
The 46th WorldSkills Competition was promoted at a recent exhibition in Jing'an District to show local skills development.
At the exhibition, some skills that will be showcased by competitors from around the world in the competition in October next year were presented. These included displays in baking, floristry, patisserie confectionery, fashion technology, hairdressing and electronics.
Jiang Zhaihua, founder of the Sinobake Vocational Training School, and her team presented various kinds of pastries at their booth, including bread and biscuits in shapes of the WorldSkills Shanghai logo and Luban locks.
A Luban lock is a kind of mortise and tenon joint structure held in mascots of the 46th WorldSkills Competition to demonstrate the artisanship of traditional Chinese carpentry.
"As the WorldSkills Competition is coming to Shanghai next year, I would like to add some WorldSkills elements in our pastries today," said Jiang.
Jiang said baking is a kind of Western skill but has become a booming industry in China.
"Nowadays, it's a kind of lifestyle for Chinese to have bread for breakfast and cakes for important occasions such as weddings and birthdays," she said. "Some people would like to learn how to make pastries out of personal interest or for the health of family members, while some may start up their own bakery after learning the skill, which can promote employment in our society."
Jiang was an English major in university and dreamed of becoming a diplomat. But after graduation, she joined an American company that brings American agricultural products into China, some of which are used in baking.
During her work, she learned baking and founded her baking training company in 2017 as she found a lack of baking schools in China.
Cooperating with overseas baking and culinary schools, her company introduces courses from other countries into China and also brings Chinese bakers overseas for short-term training.
In 2019, she led her students to represent China in the International Competition for Young Bakers and brought back a first and a second prize for individuals and a first prize for the national team.
Her company is also participating in the training of local vocational school students for candidacies to the 46th WorldSkills Competition.
"Bakery is from the West, and Chinese competitors need to learn about more bread varieties to meet difficult challenges in competitions," she said. "For example, in the 2019 WorldSkills Competition in Kazan, Russia, competitors were required to make a kind of brown bread with rye, which is popular in Germany but rarely known about in China. The bread is sour and hard but Chinese people prefer sweet and soft bread."
China won a bronze prize in that competition.
The 46th WorldSkills Competition will take place on the Chinese mainland for the first time from October 12-17 with Shanghai as its host city. Both the country and the city take it as an opportunity to promote public respect for skilled individuals and awareness of the importance of skills in social and economic development.
A series of activities have been organized to promote the competition, enhance skills training, and honor skilled people.
Jiang was honored as a national skill master and won sponsorship from the Jing'an district government.
In the past three years, the Jing'an government has trained more than 200,000 laborers in a campaign to promote skills. Two training bases were established in the district. A total of 68 skilled individuals have won honors including the state council's special allowance and titles such as skill masters at the district, city and national levels.