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Cisco Networking Academy Applauds Achievements of Canadian Skills Competition Winners

Annual Competition Recognizes Excellence in Skilled Trades and Technology Students

TORONTO – July 28, 2009 – Cisco, a major supporter of Skills/Compétences Canada, is pleased to congratulate the winners of the 15th annual Canadian Skills Competition. Five of the six medalists in this year's IT and Network Support contest are Cisco® Networking Academy® students.

Cisco Networking Academy

  • The Cisco Networking Academy is a technology education program that provides students in 165 countries with networking and technical skills to prepare them for careers in the 21st century. 
  • Committed to delivering the highest standard of information technology education to students of all nationalities, genders and economic brackets, the Networking Academy is designed to offer students real-world skills that will position them for employment and career growth.
  • There are 236 academies across Canada, with nearly 17,000 students having completed coursework preparing them for careers in information technology.

Skills/Compétences Canada

  • Skills/Compétences Canada is the national organization for students in trade, industrial, technical and service occupations.
  • The organization is the primary sponsor of the Canadian Skills Competition, held annually to recognize the achievements of students in skilled trades and technology and to encourage them to strive for excellence and pride in their chosen occupations.
  • More than 500 exceptional students joined in the excitement of hands-on competition. A total of 173 medals were awarded to the top champions in 40 contests.

IT and Network Support Contest

  • The IT and Network Support contest tests four key competencies: hardware knowledge and setup, network layout and management, Windows server operations, and Linux server operations.  
  • The networking component of the national contest is based on the most current Cisco CCNAÒ certification content.
  • The networking portion of the contest evaluates a competitor's ability to design a functional network that is scalable, adaptable and easily managed. Competitors are required to implement, verify and troubleshoot their network. 
  • The winners were recognized in May at the Skills Canada Competition in Charlottetown, PEI.


    Secondary School:

    • Gold: Nathan Wiens, Sardis Secondary, Chilliwack, British Columbia
    • Silver: Guillaume Lafrance, École Catholique Garneau, Orléans, Ontario
    • Bronze: Alex Szczuczko, Henry Wise Wood High School, Calgary, Alberta 

    Collegiate/ Postsecondary:

    • Gold: Matthew Burr, Cambrian College, Lindsay, Ontario
    • Silver: Michael Hopkins, College of the North Atlantic, St. John's, Newfoundland
    • Bronze: Dallas Rathbone, SAIT Polytechnic, Red Deer, Alberta

Supporting Quotes:

  • Rosanna Bisges, senior manager of the Cisco Networking Academy, U.S. and Canada, said:
  • "The Skills Canada Competition provides students with the opportunity to demonstrate their skills and work with their peers in a challenging and competitive environment. Cisco's ongoing work with Skills/Compétences Canada is evidence of its commitment to raising the importance and visibility of IT training and skills worldwide in a dynamic and innovative way."

  • Olivia Lu, area academy manager, Cisco Networking Academy in Canada, said:
  • "We are very pleased to announce the winners of the Skills Canada Competition and offer our congratulations to all of the participants who did so well in this year's event. This type of competition provides an arena for the best and brightest students to showcase their technology skills in a hands-on, career-oriented setting. We are particularly proud that five out of six medalists in the competition are Cisco Networking Academy students."

Educational Support

  • The national technical committee for IT and Network Support includes Chair Michel Leduc, College de Rosemont (QC); Rob Blanchard, Holland College (PEI); Nick Gommans, Infusion (ON); Randy Hirose, Winnipeg Technical College (MB); and Nolan Fretz, Okanagan College (BC).
  • The judges included Randy James, BCIT (BC); and Doug Warden and Matthew Chadder, SAIT (AB).
  • Other supporting organizations include Panduit and Cisco Press.

Supporting Resources:

Technorati Tags:

Talent Development, Skills/Compétences Canada, Networking, Cisco, Cisco Networking Academy, Security, CCNA, Cisco Certifications

About Cisco Systems

Cisco, (NASDAQ: CSCO), is the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate. Information about Cisco can be found at http://www.cisco.com. For ongoing news, please go to http://newsroom.cisco.com.

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Cisco, the Cisco logo, Cisco Systems, CCNA and Networking Academy are registered trademarks or trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the United States and certain other countries. All other trademarks mentioned in this document are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Cisco and any other company. This document is Cisco Public Information.

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