East Berkshire College Alumni


Visual merchandising student triumphs at EuroSkills

Sarah Smithers web large

Hot on the heels of Team GB’s success at London 2012 Olympics, former East Berkshire College student Sarah Smithers has kept the country’s medal tally growing by winning a silver medal in Window Display at EuroSkills, Europe’s largest skills competition.

Sarah (20) showcased her skills by designing, planning and creating two exciting window displays alongside team-mate Jenna Stephenson as part of the three-day competition in Spa, Belgium. Beating contenders from across Europe, Sarah was presented with her medal at a prestigious Olympics-style closing ceremony.

Sarah, who recently completed the retail and merchandising display course at the College’s Windsor College and now works at Alexander James Interiors in White Waltham, has also been selected for the UK squad for the WorldSkills 2013 competition in Leipzig, Germany. Sarah competed at EuroSkills as part of her training ahead of final selection for a place in the team that will represent the UK at the World’s largest international skills competition.

Sarah Smithers said: “It is amazing to have won a silver medal in visual merchandising and to be named one of the best in Europe. I’ve learnt so much over the last year and this award shows how far I’ve come.

“Studying at East Berkshire College has provided me with a wide range of skills and experience, which has given me a great start to my career. Without the College, I wouldn’t have been at EuroSkills and I wouldn’t have my job at Alexander James Interiors.”

Sarah follows in the footsteps of fellow East Berkshire College student Kirsty Hoadley, who won the gold medal in visual merchandising at WorldSkills London 2011.

The College’s Retail and Merchandising Display Department, which is based in Windsor, is a centre of excellence for display design. The courses are highly respected within the industry, having received several awards from the British Display Society. Former students have gone onto successful careers with leading retailers such as Harrods, John Lewis and Debenhams.

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