• New Zealand is off to WorldSkills.
    New Zealand is off to WorldSkills.

A New Zealand fridgee will be participating at the 47th WorldSkills International Competition in France for the very first time.

Active Refrigeration apprentice, Jack Butler, has been selected to represent New Zealand at the international competition in September 2024.

A competitor in the Institute of Refrigeration Heating & Air Conditioning Engineers of New Zealand’s (IRHACE) annual Wallie Askew Memorial Workskills Competition, Butler was one of six young apprentices that showcased their skills under the watchful eyes of industry judges at a two day event held in Palmerston North.

Gina McMaster, executive officer of HVACR industry associations, said having an apprentice represent New Zealand at such a prestigious event is a remarkable achievement.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate New Zealand’s skills and capabilities in the HVACR sector to an international audience,” she said.

“Being the pioneer apprentice to represent the HVACR industry in New Zealand is a huge honour. Jack’s success is undoubtedly a result of immense hard work and dedication from not only himself, but also from his family, mentors, trainers, the workplace providing opportunities, and the experts and companies offering essential training and guidance.”

Carl Rankin, WorldSkills New Zealand general manager, said it will be great to see New Zealand’s HVACR sector represented on the world stage.

“This is the first time we will be competing in this skill at the international competition and it’s an amazing opportunity in so many ways – to connect with the international HVAC community, to learn and to showcase a pathway for young people,” he said.