Mivan congratulates apprentice Conor

A leading Antrim fit out and bespoke joinery company has congratulated one of its employees on reaching the SkillBuild UK National Final.

Conor Dallas, who is an Apprentice Joiner studying at Northern Regional College, won the SkillBuild NI Regional Qualifier for Joinery and works with Mivan.

SkillBuild, delivered by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), is the largest multi-trade competition in the UK for construction trainees and apprentices.

Conor’s route to the final started back in February 2022 when he won the NRC inter-campus joinery competition in Newtownabbey. This led to the CITBNI Regional Qualifier in May 2022 where 79 of the brightest recruits and top performers within construction apprenticeships programmes from across Northern Ireland competed against each other. Conor finished in first place beating twelve other competitors in the joinery category.

Conor Dallas at work with Mivan

The Loughgiel man will join competitors from across the UK in November for a three-day event, as part of WorldSkills UK ‘LIVE’ held in Edinburgh. Medals are awarded at a closing ceremony, with the potential for the highest-scoring eligible recipients to join the WorldSkills UK ‘Squad UK’ and progress into international competition.

Conor said: “When I started with Mivan in August 2021, I immediately started learning in the dedicated Apprentice Workshop, reading, and interpreting drawings to make basic joints and simple joinery. Then once I started to attend college, I was already a step ahead of the other students. I am certain without this start and the guidance provided by Mivan I would not have progressed so quickly and ultimately won the qualifier.”

Conor added: “Winning was good but the skills I have developed throughout the year is the most pleasing aspect. I can see real progress in my ability. I can interpret drawings, use different hand tools, different power tools and create what the drawing requests. There is no more satisfying feeling.”

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Success for Loughgiel’s Conor
Stephen Field, Conor Dallas and Charlie McAuley

John Cunningham, CEO of Mivan, said: “We are absolutely thrilled that Conor won the regional qualifier and extremely proud he has been selected for the SkillBuild UK National Final – a first for a Mivan Apprentice.

Conor’s success is a great testament to both himself and the Mivan Apprenticeship Programme.

“With a dedicated workshop for apprentices, we believe this gives the best environment for progression. Ten new apprentices started in August, and we will start recruitment process for 2023 apprentices in the new year.

“Conor has applied himself to the role very well and exceeds in all areas. His attitude is fantastic. I look forward to supporting his future development and providing all the help he needs for the National Finals in November. We presented Conor with a gift to recognise his success and hope it aids his progress.”