Charlene Fenech, an MCAST graduate who is now an aircraft engineer with Lufthansa Technik, has been selected as Malta’s ambassador for the 2017 European Vocational Skills Week (20-24 November). Organised by the European Commission, the Week will involve hundreds of events across the EU to highlight the benefits that Vocational Education and Training (VET) brings to people of all ages. “Discover your Talent!” is the motto of the campaign and Ms Fenech aims to show that VET and apprenticeships are a smart choice, leading to high-quality jobs and increased employability.
Ms Fenech is one of a group of Ambassadors from different EU Member States who have volunteered to spread the word about VET in their home countries. She was selected for the prestigious role by the Commission and the national authorities in Malta due to her inspiring profile.
Ms Fenech said: “It is an honour for me to be appointed as Malta’s ambassador for the 2017 European Vocational Skills Week being held next month. I am looking forward to share my personal experience in the hope of encouraging others to get involved in vocational education and training. Every single person, regardless of age or background, has talent, and vocational education and training can provide them with the practical skills, knowledge and competences needed to succeed in the job market and in society at large.”
Marianne Thyssen, the EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, said: "Making vocational education and training a first option – not a second choice – is at the heart of the European Vocational Skills Week.”
Jyrki Katainen, the Commission’s Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, echoed this, adding: “The most competitive countries in the EU, and in the world, are those that invest most in skills.”
Last year, nearly 1,000 events took place across Europe during the inaugural 2016 European Vocational Skills Week, reaching close to a million stakeholders. The 2017 Week is expected to attract an even bigger turnout. The total reach of the campaign hashtags, #EUVocationalSkills and #DiscoverYourTalent last year was over 10.5 million people.