Posted on 05 September 2018
Elizabeth Newcombe (Team UK Floristry)
The UK’s best young apprentices and students will soon be heading to the EuroSkills Finals in Budapest from 26 to 29 September. The young hopefuls were urged to ‘Do Your Country Proud’ at a recent Parliamentary reception, attended by Minister of State for Apprenticeships and Skills Anne Milton MP. The official 'Send Off' took place at the Houses of Parliament, where each Team UK representative was presented with an official WorldSkills UK enamel badge.
Team UK consists of 22 of the country’s elite apprentices and students working across various skills sectors, who will face the best of the best from across the Continent. Merrist Wood College student, Elizabeth Newcombe, will be competing in the ‘Creative Arts and Fashion’ category for Floristry. They have all spent a minimum of two years in intensive training winning regional and nation competitions, highly intensive team selection processes, and months of accelerated training – to reach international standard.
Dr. Neil Bentley, CEO of WorldSkills UK, which selects and accelerates Team UK with intensive training, mentoring and elite competitive experiences, told those gathered on the Terrace of the House of Commons that the country is approaching a significant moment.
He said: “Team UK go and do your country proud – this is a momentous moment for our nation!”
“With Brexit now only months away, we need to benchmark our young people’s skills against the best of the rest of the EU. It’s only through putting our young people to the test in a time-pressured environment against the highest of specifications that we’ll know whether we are developing the skills levels we need in the UK to boost productivity, compete economically and attract inward investment to help create jobs into the future. And it’s through investing in our young people that we will grow these skills to the advanced levels we need.”
Anne Milton, Minister of State for Apprenticeships and Skills said: “You are the future, you are representing the country – and doing us proud."
“We are moving to a World where it’s not about where you come from, or whether you went to university – but what skills you can offer to an employer and help them become more productive."
“Visiting the WorldSkills Competition last year was probably the most mind-blowing experience of my life. It’s about endurance and fortitude – when you get there don’t let anything get in your way – you are the best.”