Business news


Posted By:
Mivan Ltd

30th Jun 2023

Jamie Matthews, Apprentice Joiner, won the SkillBuild NI Regional Qualifier for Joinery and Conor Dallas, Apprentice Joiner, finished a close second. Conor was also awarded the Haldane Fisher Cup for being the Best Young Apprentice of the Year.

For the first time ever, Mivan had four qualifiers into the SkillBuild NI Regional Qualifier Joinery category, each place achieved by winning the inter-campus competition at each college. Jamie Matthews, Matthew Conly, and Conor Dallas qualified from the NRC college intercampus competition and Tom Gallagher from the Belfast Metropolitan competition.

Jamie is a first-year apprentice and Conor is in his second-year apprenticeship but studying NVQ Level 3 at Northern Regional College (NRC) and both working for luxury fit out contractor, Mivan. Both young men are excellent examples of what can be achieved with an award-winning Mentor, dedication, and hard work. Their success at the regional qualifier will hopefully lead to a place at the UK SkillBuild Final.

SkillBuild, delivered by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), is the largest multi-trade competition for construction trainees and apprentices. As the biggest and longest running construction skills competition, they are looking for skill and talent that is built to last.

A series of competitions sees the very best compete against each other to be crowned a winner in their chosen trade. As each level of competition progresses, competitors will be tested on their technical abilities, time management, character, and commitment. Helping to develop confidence, self-esteem, and life skills.

The Regional Qualifiers run, from February to June each year. These one-day events bring together apprentices and trainees, with the overall eight highest-scoring competitors in each specialist skill going through to the next round – the SkillBuild National Final.

Jamie and Conor will find out in July if their scores are good enough to earn a place at the SkillBuild Final, due to take place on 21st – 23rd November in the Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes.

Commenting on first place, Jamie said “When I started with Mivan in August 2022, I had never done any joinery. Working in a dedicated Apprentice Workshop, reading, and interpreting drawings to make basic joints and simple joinery really built my confidence. I am a quick learner, but I need to thank my mentor Charlie as he always has the answer and is fantastic help to me.”

Conor, who finished runner up but still won Best Young Apprentice of the Year, added “I am really pleased Mivan apprentices placed first and second. Obviously, I would prefer to finish first, but delighted Jamie won. I really hope we have both done well enough to qualify for the final. As I competed in the final last year, I think I am more prepared this time if I make it. It was a big surprise to win the overall Apprentice Award but I am delighted and feel happy that my work over the last year has been recognised.”

John Cunningham, CEO of Mivan, said, “I am really proud Mivan had four young apprentices competing at the NI Regional Qualifier, the most Mivan has ever had. A great reflection of the work of the Apprentice Workshop and the Apprentice Mentor. Congratulations to Jamie and Conor for placing first and second, I look forward to supporting their further development. A further congratulations to Conor for winning the Overall Apprentice of the Year, a great achievement.”

Mivan has over 45 years’ experience creating luxury interior experiences for our clients. Working collaboratively with architects, designers, contractors, and suppliers to deliver excellence in everything that we do. The company successfully operates in a broad range of sectors including luxury hotels, prime residential, museums, stadiums, arenas, commercial offices, modular solutions and marine.