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December 7, 2021

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Skills competition pushes new careers

A SKILLS competition for new vocations was held in Shanghai over the weekend, attracting 23 teams and 330 individuals to compete in 20 skill and technology categories, such as all-media operation, AI training, decluttering and online sales.

Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the event was held simultaneously at 14 venues in 7 districts to avoid overcrowding.

The event was also a selection for candidates to represent Shanghai at the National New Vocations and Digital Technology Skills Competition.

On the theme of “New Era, New Skills, New Dreams,” the competition focused on new professions in the emerging digital economy industry.

There were five professional technology categories — smart manufacturing engineering, integrated circuit engineering, artificial intelligence engineering, industrial Internet engineering and virtual reality engineering. The rest 15 were for skilled people, such as online sales staff, chain store operation managers, supply chain managers, AI trainers, industrial robotic system operators and housekeepers providing decluttering services.

These are all new vocations unveiled by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, and the competition was expected to advance social recognition of the new careers and generally promote employment in society.

Most of the competitors were very young and well educated. About 60 percent of them were enterprise employees and 40 percent teachers. Nearly 70 percent were younger than 35. More than 80 percent had a bachelor’s or higher degrees.

The employers of the competitors included state-owned, private and foreign-invested enterprises, as well as vocational schools and private training organizations, indicating greater social attention to digital technologies and digital economy as well as the urgent need for related talent and the bright prospects for related career development.

Gold, silver and bronze prizes were given to outstanding individuals and teams while some individuals won medallions for excellence.

All the winning contestants will have had their vocational skills level upgraded.

A total of 40 competitors — the top two winners for each competition category — will represent Shanghai at the National New Vocation and Digital Technology Skills Competition in Hangzhou, neighboring Zhejiang Province, in January.


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