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Five apprentices from additive manufacturing specialists Ricoh 3D have showcased their outstanding potential for the future by securing success in a major engineering competition.

Ricoh 3D was awarded gold and silver medals in the Manufacturing Team Challenge category at the World Skills 2019 National Finals.

The year three trio of Belinda Nightingale, Chloe Millington and Thomas Mills won gold, while there was a silver medal for Tom Moule and Harry Maddox, who are both in the second year of their apprenticeships. 

The World Skills event attracted entries from across the UK with teams working on a project to design, build and programme an electric crane. The medal winners were announced at a special awards ceremony at the NEC in Birmingham.

A demanding brief set out by World Skills officials meant the crane had to be remote controlled, move in all directions, successfully pick up several objects up to a weight of 5kg and complete an obstacle course.

The teams also had to create a 3D model of the crane and re-programme the electronics, while they were also tested with other engineering challenges.

Mark Dickin, AM & Moulding Engineering Manager at Ricoh, and himself a former graduate of the Ricoh apprenticeship scheme, said: “We are all extremely proud of the apprentices who achieved success in what was an extremely competitive and demanding event.

“The World Skills Final is well respected throughout the industry and to achieve gold and silver medals is testament to the hard work of the apprentices and the programme we have for developing talent here at Ricoh.

“A number of our apprentices have spent a period of time in the additive manufacturing department as part of their rotation through the business – and may well return here for a full-time position at the end of their training. Many of the skills they developed within that time were utilised in this challenge”.

Ricoh is a true end-to-end manufacturer, taking products through their full development cycle – whether it’s one or one million parts.

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