Australia & NZ

Australian ‘Skillaroo’ Technician to Compete in Russia

Patrick Brennan, a technician with Tony Stephens Refrigeration & Air Conditioning in Gympie, Australia, is a “Skillaroo.”

That means he is one of 15 young people, ages 19-22, from a variety of skilled trades who have won a WorldSkills competition in Australia this year and will represent the country in a 60-nation WorldSkills competition August 22-27 in Kazan, Russia.

At the Australian event in April, Brennan won a gold medal in the Refrigeration and Air Conditioning category as  well as the Best in Nation award covering all categories. He competed in installing and commissioning a glycol refrigeration system, fault-finding, and retrofitting an air conditioner.

WorldSkills International “promotes the benefits of and need for skilled professionals through grassroots community projects, skill competitions, and knowledge exchange through inter national cooperation and development between industr y, government, organisations, and institutions,” says its website (https://

WorldSkills has set up a website to solicit financial support for Brennan’s trip to the Kazan competition.

Brennan is also supported by Australian wholesaler and manufacturer Kirby, a division of Beijer Ref, and is the face of the Kirby Apprentice Fund Initiative (see main story, page 68).

“I love my skill because it involves a lot of problem-solving,” says Brennan on his WorldSkills website.

“I’m always up for a challenge.”

Patrick Brennan