David Kehoe, national training and technical representative at British Gypsum, has been announced as the UK WorldSkills expert for Plastering and Drywall Systems ahead of the 2017 competition in Abu Dhabi.

Held every two years, the WorldSkills competition is the biggest vocational education and skills excellence event in the world. It brings together young professionals from around the globe and across a wide range of industries to test their skills in simulated real work challenges that must be completed to exceptionally high international standards.

British Gypsum has been actively supporting WorldSkills as a training partner since Plastering and Drywall Systems was introduced as a full skill in 2011, following a demonstration event in Canada in 2009. David’s appointment marks a further step in British Gypsum’s role and commitment in helping to develop young talent in the construction industry.

In his new role as a UK WorldSkills expert, David will work closely with the UK team, offering advice and expert training to help the young professionals hone their skills and prepare for WorldSkills team selection. Training will take place in British Gypsum’s network of purpose built Technical Academies around the UK.

David Kehoe said: “Helping students and apprentices to be the best they can be in their given trade is so important to constructing a skilled future workforce.

“Competitions like WorldSkills are a fantastic way of helping young professionals build their confidence and lay a solid foundation for their future career progression. My new role will increase our involvement in this great initiative and I’m really looking forward to helping find and train the best Plastering and Dry Lining students to form Team UK at the competition.”

In addition to WorldSkills, British Gypsum also sponsors the SkillBuild regional competitions. Run by CITB, these are a part of the WorldSkills UK competition portfolio and lead to the national finals at the Skills Show (17-19th November 2016, NEC Birmingham). Age-eligible competitors who excel in the national finals will then be selected to train for the WorldSkills competition in Russia in 2019.