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The IMI urges employers and FE colleges to make nominations to IMI Skills Competition before deadline

George Hinkley, winner of the Heavy Vehicle Technology category in 2022 IMI Skills Competition and IMI Apprentice of the Year 2023 is a great example of what winning means

19 year old George Hinkley, the South Mimms-based Scania GB technician is a great example of how the IMI Skills Competition can be a great career boost. In August 2022 he was named Scania UK’s Apprentice of the Year after winning a gruelling competition designed to test the skills and mettle of the apprentice technicians. He went on to win the IMI’s 2022 Skills Heavy Vehicle Technology category at the UK WorldSkills final, in November where the finalists battled it out across two days of practical competition at Cardiff and Vale College. And he completed a hat-trick of prestigious awards as he won Apprentice of the Year at The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) 2023 Annual Dinner and Awards this March.

In September 2024, George will go on to represent the UK team at the WorldSkills International finals in Lyon, France.

On winning the IMI Apprentice of the Year Award George said:

“To win this award is a big honour. I’m confident in my ability and enjoy the work I do, but to be recognised for my skills is truly amazing.”

Aaron McGrath, Head of People Development at Scania UK, said:

“George is an inspiration for other budding technicians, I’m pleased his skills have been recognised at such a high level.

“He’s an outstanding employee and continuously demonstrates unparalleled maturity, passion and dedication to his own career. This is evidenced through his commitment to both personal and

The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) is urging employers and Further Education (FE) colleges to nominate their students and apprentices for this year’s IMI Skills Competition. Entry is free and could earn employers and FE colleges additional free training for their nominated employees with the competition counting towards the 20% off the job training in an apprenticeship.

Employers and FE colleges simply need to complete the nomination form on the IMI website with the consent of their nominees. There are four streams in which nominees can be entered:

  • Light Vehicle Automotive Technology
  • Heavy Vehicle Automotive Technology
  • Automotive Body Repair
  • Automotive Refinishing

The deadline for nominations is 24th March and the initial online quiz must be completed by 31st March 2023.

Once the nomination has been completed the nominee will be asked to complete a 30-minute multiple choice quiz. Top scorers will be invited to sit an online knowledge test to gain a place in the National Qualifiers. This stage of the competition can be completed anywhere – there’s no need for any live attendance or travel. The one day practical National Qualifiers are held between 17th May and 23rd June 2023.

The top six competitors in each skill area will then be invited to take part in training days in preparation for the practical Live finals in November – with travel bursaries available upon application though WorldSkills UK. Following the final some of the finalists, if they are age eligible, may have the opportunity to progress on to Team UK for the biannual WorldSkills International competition.

Employers and FE colleges can find more information, including a pre-recorded webinar about the IMI Skills Competitions entry and shortlisting process at

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