Putting polish to gold & silver medals in nail technology

Putting polish to gold & silver medals in nail technology

Stockport students have won gold and silver medals in the biggest competition for colleges in the UK – making up half of the finalists in nail technology.

A total of four beauty trainees made it through to the WorldSkills UK competition at Birmingham NEC on Thursday November 21 after acing the regional heats.

Stephanie Kelly, 29, topped the leader board for her application and removal of red gel polish and her freestyle commercial nail art of 3D bow and Frozen snowman character Olaf. Seventeen-year-old Joely McGahey’s designs came a close second with Alison Leech, 34, and Lauren Wilkinson, 25, also representing Stockport College in the final eight.

Stephanie, who is studying Nail Services at Wellington Road South campus, said: “I wouldn’t have been able to achieve this without the support and guidance of my tutor, Jacqui (Jacqueline O’Sullivan). With her support, I have been able to build up clients for my own business. I just want to keep perfecting my practice and learning everything the industry has to offer”.

All four students were taught by nail expert Jacqui O’Sullivan who has been working in further education for the last 13 years. The nail aficionado judges competitions, writes nail curriculums and contributes to magazines in the hair and beauty sector.

Stockport College tutor Jacqui said: “To have a gold medal and silver win out of all the colleges in the UK is fabulous! All competitors showed amazing nail skills and Stephanie Kelly worked hard prior to the competition, practising and practising to perfect her design.”

Students were judged on nail consistency in shape and length, the crispness of smile lines in French design, the smoothness and detail of their artwork, and the continuity of their high shine or matte finish.

“Joely worked beside Stephanie, with the same determination, and came in second for the amazing nails she created. I’m so proud of all the nail technician students who made it to the finals. To have four among the last eight in the competition shows learners’ dedication and that we can produce the best nail work in the country.”

Silver medallist Joely said: “The competition was nerve-racking and I could tell by just looking around our area that there was a lot of talent in the room. I enjoyed every minute of the time I spent at the competition. I’m proud of the progress I’ve made so far at Stockport, and this is a great way of showing that I have the ability to achieve.”