Employment and Learning Minister Dr Stephen Farry has announced the winners of the Northern Ireland VQ Learner of the Year and VQ Employer of the Year on Vocational Qualification (VQ) Day 2014.
At an awards ceremony held in Parliament Buildings yesterday evening, Josh Mens scooped the Northern Ireland VQ Learner of the Year 2014 and Seagate Technology won the Northern Ireland VQ Employer of the Year 2014.
Congratulating the VQ Learner of the Year winner and finalists, the Minister said: “You should all be incredibly proud. I have no doubt that you will reap the benefits of your hard work and commitment through long and successful careers in your chosen vocational areas.
“VQ Day provides an excellent opportunity to recognise the outstanding achievement of learners in Northern Ireland and highlights the vital role that vocational qualifications play in ensuring employers have access to skilled personnel who are equipped with the right skills. Equipping people with the skills they need is at the very heart of delivering a prosperous future for individuals, businesses and the Northern Ireland economy.”
The VQ Learner of the Year, Josh Mens, completed his BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Engineering and his NVQ Level 3 Diploma in Engineering Operations as part of his apprenticeship with Kiverco Recycling Systems and South West College in Dungannon. He achieved the highest recognition for apprentices when he was awarded the Department’s Apprentice of the Year in 2013, having previously been awarded Most Promising First Year Apprentice. He is one of only four Engineering Students in Northern Ireland to be awarded the Strickland Scholarship to help pursue his studies. Josh is currently studying a part-time Foundation Degree in Engineering and he will also complete a NVQ Level 4 as he progresses towards a full honours degree.