The finest woodwork creations by Manawatu secondary school students were showcased at the Secondary Schools Creative Woodskills Competition last week.
The prize giving ceremony was held at the Palmerston North Library, with judging by UCOL Furniture Design and Making Lecturers Andy Halewood, Rowan Dicks, and Richard Morris.
This is the seventh year UCOL staff members have judged the competition, which they run in conjunction with the Middle Districts Farm & Forestry Association and secondary school teachers.
Fourteen students representing Feilding High School, Longburn Adventist College, and Freyberg High School entered the competition.
Projects entered included tables, chairs, musical instruments, and toys.
The top prize was taken out by Chad Sparrow of Longburn Adventist College for his monks chair.
UCOL Lecturer Rowan Dicks said the competition was very difficult to judge, but Chad’s project stood out largely due to the finishing.
“Chad’s work had a silky smooth finish that really set it apart from the other entrants. He also went further with his design.”
Rowan was delighted that some of entrants approached him for tips on how they can improve their woodskills.
“It’s really encouraging to see these students so keen to improve, and they’re not afraid to ask for advice.”
Rowan said that there is a history of students entering this competition and then going on to enrol in UCOL’s Diploma in Furniture Design and Making.
UCOL Executive Dean Engineering & Applied Technologies Dr Nicky Van der Bergh said the calibre of the entrants showed that there was a bright future for construction, engineering and furniture making in the region.
“I’m very impressed with the creativity and it really showcases what we have to offer in the Manawatu and wider Horizons region.”
Projects by UCOL’s second year Furniture Design and Making students were also on display, with Amy Rampton receiving the People’s Choice Award as voted by those who attended the prize giving.
First place - Chad Sparrow, Longburn Adventist College
Second place - Tom Sanson, Feilding High School
Third Place - Daniel Neill, Longburn Adventist College
Merit - Luke Grey, Feilding High School
Highly Commended - Stephen Rye-Dun, Longburn Adventist College and Brian Huynh, Freyberg High School
Pictured above: : Replica Les Paul and Jaguar electric guitars made by Feilding High School students Tom Sanson and Brodie Jenkins.