Bingara Central School student, Jade Dixon returned from the National Worldskills competition with a Gold medal.
Jade was one of the team from the region who took part in the event at the Brisbane Exhibition Centre from May 7, 8 and 9.
The presentations were held on the Monday night, and Jade was the only competitor from the New England region to win gold.
Jade competed as a T VET student, and the others from the region were in the open competition.
Over 500 competitors took part in 50 categories.
Jade, who completed her HSC in retail last year when she was in Year 11, said she was required to undertake a series of tasks relating to retail over the three days.
She was assessed on tasks associated with the day to day running of a retail business, then, through role play, she was assessed on the more obscure task of how to react in the event of a shoplifter in the store.
Jade told the Advocate she competed against five others from different areas all round Australia. Her team included five school students, and 13 open competitors, from all over the New England region, plus team leaders.
“I thought I was going OK, but messed up one area on the last day,” Jade said.
When the bronze then the silver medallists were announced, Jade said she thought she had missed out on a medal.
“When they announced my name, I had to check on the big screen to make sure, it was such a surprise,” she said.
Winners of the open section will go to London to compete further. “It would be good if I got to go overseas, but they don’t take us,” she said.
Jade said that Paul McLachlan at Fays and Rod King from the Bingara Newsagency had given advice which she found very helpful. She has worked at Fays as a trainee for the past three years.