Top achievement for Antrim priest at VQ awards
AN Antrim parish priest has received a certificate of achievement at this year’s VQ Learner of the Year awards ceremony.
Dr Stephen Farry, Employment and Learning Minister, presented Martin Magill, who studied at Northern Regional College in Ballymena, with his certificate of achievement at an awards ceremony which was held in Parliament Buildings.
VQ Day is a UK-wide celebration of the achievement of the millions of people, who gain a vocational qualification every year, and recognises and celebrates the value of vocational qualifications.
In his keynote speech, the Minister praised all of the VQ Learner of the Year finalists.
“Skills form the backbone of any economy and all the finalists should be justifiably proud of their achievements and look forward to successful careers in their chosen field,” Dr Farry said.
Martin has achieved a Diploma in Higher Education in Counselling with Commendation at Northern Regional College.
Roisin Horner (Curriculum Manager) and Elizabeth Carey (Course Director FdSc in Counselling) at Northern Regional College, said: “Martin’s journey in counselling training involved a steep learning curve. He found counselling training challenging but highly rewarding.
“He demonstrated his personal and spiritual values throughout his training with his peers, tutors and clients. Martin learnt so that he could assist and inspire others in his capacity as a parish priest and innovative work with youth deeply affected by the social conflict.
“He consistently demonstrated ethical values in his personal and professional interactions and continues to pursue his professional journey.”
Collette McIvor, Counselling Manager at Antrim Counselling Centre, added: “As a counsellor in Antrim Counselling Centre, Martin has helped many individuals in times of crisis and despair. He was a great motivator and a true inspiration to all those who had the pleasure of working alongside him.”
Dr Farry also stressed the importance of vocational qualifications to the local economy: “Vocational qualifications have a pivotal role to play in ensuring that Northern Ireland has a better skilled, modern and dynamic workforce to drive our economy forward.
“The finalists are an embodiment of the flexibility of vocational learning in the workplace. They demonstrate the power of learning to change and improve lives, and the value of qualifications to employers, to ensure that their employees have the right skills for the job.
“All employers who hear about VQ Day should recognise the value of vocational education and training to support business success and growth.
A well-qualified workforce will reap dividends in the future if you invest in training today. Today we celebrate the ways in which vocational education and training, in all its diversity, delivers benefits for learners, employers and Northern Ireland as a whole.
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Weather for Antrim
Sunday 19 May 2013
Temperature: 10 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 7 mph
Wind direction: South
Temperature: 8 C to 15 C
Wind Speed: 16 mph
Wind direction: North west