The group – made up of representatives from education, business, and young people – will help to increase engagement with our development programmes among underrepresented groups, enabling us to reach young people from all backgrounds and give them the best start in work and life.
Members will help us to address and remove barriers and challenges identified through the research, which prevent young people from accessing our development programmes.
Dr Neil Bentley-Gockmann OBE, CEO, WorldSkills UK
Marion Plant, CEO, North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College
Jo Maher, Principal, Loughborough College
Yvonne Kelly, Principal, Barking & Dagenham College
Clare Howard, CEO, Natspec
Sharon Blyfield, Head of Apprenticeships and Early Careers, Coca-Cola European Partners
Paul Fitzpatrick, Senior Manager, Toyota
Susanna Lawson, CEO, OneFile
Elizabeth Forkuoh, The Gleneagles Hotel
John Sweeney O’Hara, Senior Learner Engagement Officer, New College Lanarkshire
Jason Holt, CEO, Holts Group
We are ambitious to keep pushing for change, and we know that we can’t do it alone. This group will be a critical friend to support and challenge us to drive change.
We are driven by the knowledge that raising the bar and widening the gate are not mutually exclusive. Working with our partners we can help ensure that more young people get access to the benefits of our skills programmes and training to achieve higher standards to help them succeed in work and life.
The make-up of the group is also inclusive, including 50 per cent women, over a quarter who are BAME, members who identify as LGBT+ and have different faiths, and representation of learners with learning difficulties and disabilities, which means we can take a holistic but targeted approach with a bias to action to help drive further partnership working across the sector.
I have seen first-hand how WorldSkills UK’s development programmes have transformed the technical skills and confidence of young people, which is why at NWSLC we encourage as many of our students to take part as possible. I’m excited to be working together with others across the sector, with the joint mission of reaching more young people from all backgrounds and helping to give them the skills needed to create stronger and brighter futures.