History

WorldSkills International, the governing body, showcases the importance of skills by recognising young, skilled professionals around the world through several activities including Research, Promoting Skills, Career Building, Education and Training, International Cooperation and Development, and, Skills Competitions.

WorldSkills is the global hub for skills excellence and development with ongoing activities nationally, regionally and globally.

The WorldSkills Competition is its flagship event. It promotes world class standards and introduces youth to over 51 skill areas including Cabinetmaking, Web Design, Automobile Technology, Mechatronics, Hairdressing and Welding.
Competitions are held in over 77 member countries; there are also regional competitions.

Barbados became an associate member of WorldSkills in 2011 becoming the second English speaking member. Jamaica has been a full member since 2002.

The first biennial WorldSkills Barbados Competition was held in 2012. Barbados went on to participate in the second WorldSkills Americas in November 2012. The island's sole representative, Akeila Chapman of the Barbados Vocational Training Board (BVTB), copped the silver medal in the Ladies and Men’s Hairdressing category.

In 2014, following the staging of the second biennial WorldSkills Barbados Competition, the country again entered the WorldSkills Americas competition. Rukiya Clarke of Semaj International School of Cosmetology and Trichology won bronze in the hairdressing category.

Barbados became a full member of WorldSkills International in 2017. The four gold medallists from the WorldSkills Barbados Competition 2016 will represent their country at the 44th biennial WorldSkills Competition taking place in Abu Dhabi October 14th – 19th. They will compete in the skill areas of Culinary Arts, Automotive Technology, Hairdressing and Garment Making, respectively.