WorldSkills UK honours 2024 equity, diversity and inclusion heroes

8 awards handed out at Houses of Parliament ceremony

8 awards handed out at Houses of Parliament ceremony

FE colleges and staff who have advocated for more inclusive curriculums, more ethnically diverse college leadership and better employability for SEND learners have received prestigious awards.

WorldSkills UK has unveiled the winners of its equity, diversity and inclusion heroes awards 2024, at a reception hosted at the Houses of Parliament today.

The awards celebrate the extraordinary accomplishments of a select few individuals and organisations who have reduced the stigmas around young people with disabilities and neurodivergence.

The accolades were supported by sponsors such as by the Skills and Education Group, UVAC, and FE Week.

One of the winners was North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College, which won the skills competition advocate for developing a supported internship programme for SEND learners. The initiative has enabled 65 per cent of 20 interns to obtain part-time or full-time work in the last two years.

Arvind Kaushal MK Group

Meanwhile, Louise Gaskin (pictured above) from North East Surrey College of Technology (NESCOT) took home the gong for inclusive skills development. This was due to her pivotal role in guiding students participating in the WorldSkills UK digital media production competition and her advocacy for a more inclusive curriculum in FE.

Milton Keynes College Group head of people development & EDI Arvind Kaushal won the pioneer award at the ceremony for his work as programme lead for the DfE-funded equality & diversity programme #BAMEintoLeadership. Judges found he was also instrumental in delivering professional development to thousands of educators in over 85 countries through the #LDeduchat series.

“We are not in these jobs to win awards, but it is fantastic to have people recognise the work that we at MK Group are undertaking, it shows the importance of these programmes in helping all young people to succeed,” said Kaushal.

Haris Jarvid, a degree apprentice with Lloyds Banking Group, who won the Rising Star award said: “Today has been amazing, I didn’t expect to win at all. Lloyds Bank has been so supportive of not only my apprenticeship journey, but the wider diversity agenda. I hope events like this show that organisations really need to start including diversity as a key factor in business planning, it delivers value for all, staff, customers and the wider community.”    

Haris Jarvid from Lloyds Banking Group

Ben Blackledge, chief executive of WorldSkills UK, congratulated the winners.

He said: “Your achievements in driving change to ensure all the young people you work with have the opportunity to succeed through apprenticeships and technical education is truly inspiring. 

“At WorldSkills UK, we are proud to provide a platform for celebrating those making a significant difference. By working together, we can advocate for real change across the sector, creating inclusive opportunities that give all young people the chance for success in work and life.” 

Charlotte Nichols MP, who sponsored the event at the Houses of Parliament, said: “Congratulations to this year’s winners of the WorldSkills UK EDI Heroes Awards. It was fantastic to support these awards and come together to celebrate the finalists and winners for the first time at the Houses of Parliament.”

See the full list of winners below:

More from this theme

Apprenticeships, awards

Multicultural Apprenticeship Awards honour diverse talent and inclusive employers

Award winners praised for demonstrating 'remarkable dedication and resilience'

Joshua Stein

Your thoughts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *