TORONTO, ONTARIO - Recent Humber College graduates, Avery Bird and Theo Willert, are bringing home a bronze medal after competing for four days in the mechatronics competition at WorldSkills in Abu Dhabi.  Team Humber also won The Best of Nation award which is given to the competitors who have the highest standing amongst their country’s or region’s teams.

"This medal means so much to us. For the past four years we have been training and competing all over Canada to get to this point,” said Theo and Avery, Humber alumni and Bronze Mechatronics WorldSkills medalists. "We started our journey on the first week of our program at Humber, and spent very long days and nights perfecting our skills.  Without Humber and all of the people in it that supported us we would have never gotten to this point, all the way across the world standing on the podium.  The future will be very exciting, and the medal proves that we have the skills to go far."

“Theo's and Avery's result is spectacular,” said Darren Lawless, Humber’s Dean of Applied Research and Innovation. These highly skilled and motivated young professionals demonstrated that Canada has world-class skills and technology talent and that Humber’s polytechnic model of education is propelling students to new levels of success. The entire Humber community is proud of their performance.”

The WorldSkills competition is much like the Olympics, with individuals and teams representing their country across a variety of events. Mechatronics is the building of an automated systems for industry using mechanics, electronics, pneumatics, and computer technology. Mechatronics technicians design, build, maintain, and repair automated equipment, and program the equipment and systems which enable communication between machines and people. 

“We are celebrating our bronze medal as if we won the championship.” said Neal Mohammed, Director of Humber’s Centre for Technology Innovation (CTI). “Theo and Avery’s achievement puts Canada on the map in the field of mechatronics, and is the highest finish ever for a Canadian team.”

During the WorldSkills competition, Theo and Avery had to undertake building, programing and troubleshooting a miniaturized version of a fully automated production line over the four days of competition. It included the integration of a new piece of technology or equipment that they and the other teams had never seen. More than 40 teams competed in the same category.

After winning gold at both the provincial and national skills competitions, Theo and Avery became Canada’s representative at the WorldSkills mechatronics competition. Both Theo and Avery graduated from Humber’s electromechanical engineering technology program last semester. They continued their training for the competition at Humber and Magna International through the college’s unique Springboard Mentorship program that gives recent graduates the chance to apply their skills in the workplace.

Images of Theo and Avery
Video of a recap of Theo and Avery’s win
Video of Humber’s Springboard Mentorship program with Magna International

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About Humber College Institute of Technology & Advanced Learning
Established in 1967, Humber College is a global leader in polytechnic education. Combining in-depth theoretical learning and hands-on experience with applied research and extensive industry connections, Humber provides career-focused education to 31,000 full-time and 23,000 part-time students across three campuses. The college offers a comprehensive range of credentials including honours undergraduate degrees, postgraduate certificates, diplomas, apprenticeships and certificates. More than four out of five Humber graduates are employed within six months of completing their studies. Visit humber.ca.

About WorldSkills
WorldSkills is a biannual international event which brings together the world’s most talented skilled trades and technology competitors. This year’s more than 1200 competitors from 58 countries and regions competed, participating in 51 skills competitions. Canada was represented by 31 competitors participating in 28 skills.

For more information or to schedule an interview please contact:
Nadia Araujo
416.675.6622 ext. 5479
nadia.araujo@humber.ca