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European Vocational Skills Week
News article30 September 2018Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion

Why host an event for European Vocational Skills Week


This year, we’re hoping to make European Vocational Skills Week even bigger and better, with more local, regional, national and Europe-wide events.

We’re hoping that this year, we will see even more open days, career fairs, seminars, conferences and study visits.

But what’s in it for the event organisers? Why should you host a European Vocational Skills Week event?

Firstly, European Vocational Skills Week is a great way to share the benefits of VET with a much wider audience. Last year, events held by organisations all over Europe reached almost one million people in 45 different countries. There were 1,585 events and activities registered, and one thousand participants joined the events in Brussels alone.

Hosting an event allows you to share your passion for vocational training and apprenticeships not just with young and older people and potential employees, but with like-minded individuals, businesses, agencies and organisations from across Europe.

Petya Evtimova leads the “Domino Project”, Bulgaria’s country-wide dual education programme. Speaking at last year’s European Vocational Skills Week event, she said, “events like this really, really improve the perception – really improve the public image – of vocational education and vocational skills for society.”

Hannah Colston is a Trainee Quantity Surveyor at UK construction company Trojan Group, and was in Brussels for last year’s European Vocational Skills Week events. As a Member of the European Apprentices Network, she’s already a firm believer in the benefits of vocational education, but said, “I think European Vocational Skills Week has done a fantastic job of highlighting the wide range of opportunities that are available through apprenticeship and vocational education.”

However, it’s not just about showcasing your own vocational training and apprenticeship opportunities to potential students and companies. European Vocational Skills Week also gives you the chance to network andlearn from others.

Inge Vossenaar is the Director for Vocational and Adult Education at the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science in the Netherlands. During the 2017 European Vocational Skills Week, she visited “Count on Skills” in Amsterdam, a large national conference on adult learning and basic skills, which highlights the importance of lifelong learning. She spoke about the networking opportunities that European Vocational Skills Week events can offer:

“Today, people from all over the Netherlands who are working with illiterate people are meeting up here. There are people from government, from local governments, people from libraries, from schools, volunteers who are working with people who are illiterate, and by meeting up together, they can exchange their experiences in how to reach people who are illiterate.”

Events held during European Vocational Skills Week also give you a fantastic opportunity to speak directly to students and apprentices themselves. It’s a chance to get valuable feedback, which will keep you ahead of the game and could help you to develop your offer.

Lasse Sjøbeck Jørgensen is a Board Member of the Organising Bureau of European School Student Unions (OBESSU) and a member of the European Apprentices Network. He was in Brussels for European Vocational Skills Week 2017, where he said, “it's nice to see, finally, someone wants to listen to us as young people, because we're the ones this is about! We need to reach out to those people to tell them what we as students believe should be done about vocational education.”

If you'd like to organise an event or activity at local, regional, national or even European level between September and 31 December 2018, read our six steps for planning a great event, or simply fill in the registration form available via the EU Vocational Skills Week webpage.