North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College (NWSLC)’s competition lead has been recognised as a champion of diversity and inclusion in technical education as part of this year’s WorldSkills UK Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Heroes Awards.
Pami Johal, Head of Competitions for NWSLC, who supports students to enter national skills competitions won the Pioneer Award 2023 for her role in developing the ‘Inclusive Skills’ concept designed for students with educational needs and disabilities.
Pami championed the development of these skills competitions as part of the WorldSkills UK portfolio, helping to devise, promote and create robust challenges for these students. During the three-year implementation period, Pami helped to create test projects for regional qualifiers as well as the national WorldSkills UK finals. She has been an advocate for inclusive skills competitions and has successfully increased engagement through CPD sessions. Pami was previously recognised as part of the WorldSkills UK 2017 Local Heroes awards.
The annual WorldSkills Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Heroes Awards are designed to recognise and celebrate individuals and organisations who champion diversity and inclusion within their organisations and the technical education sector. Winners across multiple categories came from large and small companies, charities, training organisations, colleges, and universities.
Students and apprentices from NWSLC performed particularly well in the Inclusive Skills competitions in 2022 collecting ten medals in total and putting the college at the top of the medal table in England.
Marion Plant, OBE FCGI, Principal and Chief Executive of NWSLC said,
“We are really proud of Pami’s work to support Inclusive Skills and this award provides fitting recognition of her commitment and dedication to this scheme.
“We always find that engaging in skills competitions helps students to build their confidence as well as preparing them well for the world of work. Our aim is to widen participation in skills competitions across our entire student body and we rely on inspirational colleagues like Pami to help and support every entrant.”
An apprentice and student from NWSLC are training to represent the UK on the world’s stage at the bi-annual WorldSkills competition in Lyon in 2024. Apprentice painter and decorator Hattie Parnham, and joinery student Sam Abbott, have just been selected for WorldSkills’ Squad UK for a chance to compete on an international stage next year.