(WorldSkills UK Way: the art of teaching, training & assessment)
Ben Blackledge: Deputy Chief Executive Officer, WorldSkills UK
Ben is responsible for driving WorldSkills UK’s programme of work both in the UK and internationally. In partnership with representatives from government, industry, and education, he leads the UK-wide initiative to embed skills competitions methodology into apprenticeship and training programmes, raising standards and ensuring more young people from all walks of life are being equipped with the right skills to help businesses better compete globally. Ben ensures that the UK remains at the forefront of international skills development in his role of Technical Delegate at WorldSkills Europe and WorldSkills International.
Dr Stephanie Tibbert: Performance Psychologist, WorldSkills UK
Dr. Steph Tibbert is a performance coach, working with athletes, coaches/instructors, dancers, and musicians. Stephanie specialises in a collaborative approach to developing strategies with individuals who find the pressurised competition or audition environment difficult to manage. Recently, Steph has provided psychological support musicians in Shanghai Orchestra Academy and footballers in the Australian League. Steph has written numerous research articles focussing on the development of mental toughness in elite sport, overtraining, self-talk and the antecedents of choking in high-pressure situations. In her WorldSkills UK capacity, Steph has been a team leader for five international competition providing wellbeing support for both physical and mental health.
Libby Clegg MBE: Olympic 5 time Olympic Medalist
Libby is one of Team GB’s most accomplished athletes having competed and won medals for Great Britain in 4 Paralympic games in 2008 in Beijing, 2012 in London, 2016 in Rio and in the delayed 2020 Tokyo games. During her career Libby has won 5 Olympic medals including being double Olympic Champion in the T11 100m & 200m in Rio as well as 20 other international medals, titles, and achieving world record times. She has a deteriorating eye condition known as Stargardt’s Macular Dystrophy giving her only partial peripheral vision and is registered blind. Outside of athletics Libby was a recent star as the first blind person on the TV show Dancing on Ice in 2019 making it to the final and finishing 3rd. Libby was awarded an MBE in the 2017 New Years honours list for services to athletics and charity.
Jo Maher: Principal and CEO, Loughborough College
Jo Maher is Principal and Chief Executive at Loughborough College, an FA Council member, and Trustee of the Skills Education Group. Jo spent 7 years supporting WorldSkills Team UK as Performance Team Leader at 4 international competitions. Jo is a qualified teacher, assessor, Chartered Scientist and internationally published academic.
Elizabeth Newcombe: Team UK member, WorldSkills UK
Encouraged by her tutor at College, Elizabeth became involved as a competitor in WorldSkills UK in 2017 and received intensive training from experts in the floral industry in preparation for international competitions. She was awarded two Medallions of Excellence as a competitor with WorldSkills UK, together with the title RHS Young Chelsea Florist of the Year 2019. Inspired by the performance training she received during her time at WorldSkills UK, Elizabeth now studies performance psychology at the University of Winchester alongside running her Florist shop and hopes to inspire and encourage the development of future competitors.
Rachael Carr: Network Systems Integration Engineer, BAE Systems
Rachael is a Vehicle Systems Integration Engineer at BAE Systems, currently working as part of Team Tempest. Rachael began her career as an Engineering Apprentice working in Preston after leaving college at 18 with a BTEC National Diploma in Electrical/Electronic Engineering. Towards the end of her apprenticeship she completed in the 2011 WorldSkills Competition in London. Since completing her apprenticeship she continued with further education and finished with a Degree in Mechatronics, had several job roles within BAE Systems across differing engineering disciplines and now works with Team Tempest. Rachael has won several awards throughout her career so far, the most recent being “Top 50 Women in Engineering: Current and Former Apprentices (WE50) in 2019.
Dr Catherine Manning: National Head of Mentoring and practitioner research, The Education and Training Foundation
Catherine spent over 10 years working in a range of Further Education settings, including prisons, adult community learning and FE colleges. She undertook a variety of roles including teacher, learning support assistant, course leader, teaching and learning coach/mentor and teacher educator. Prior to joining ETF, Catherine undertook a full-time PhD in Education. Her research focussed on mentoring for teachers in the FE sector. She joined ETF as Operations Manager for Advanced Teacher Status before becoming National Head of Practitioner Research and Development.