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25 April 2009

Calgary to host an Olympics for non-athletes

it_world_250.gifBy Jennifer Kavur, Computer World Canada

IT pros can meet peers and hand-pick recruits at this international event aimed to battle the global skills shortage.

Nearly 150,000 people are expected to visit Stampede Park this fall for WorldSkills Calgary 2009, an Olympic-style event with 1000 participants from 51 countries competing for gold, silver and bronze medals in over 40 skill categories.

While the international trade, service and technology Competition is geared to promoting skilled trades careers to youth, it’s also a prime occasion for IT professionals to hand-pick new recruits.

“Most managers and CEOs really get excited about the job recruitment prospects,” said Michelle Bussey, Communications and Marketing Director for WorldSkills International (WSI), the global non-profit organization behind the event.

To qualify for the Competition, participants must be between 17 and 22 years old.

“You get the best interview possible because you get to see them in action,” said Bussey. “And they are the best in the world really.”

The event also “raises the bar” on new technologies and trends, according to Bussey. “We really try to meet the highest industry standards in all the different skills, so it’s a learning process as well,” she said.

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