Final challenge for Nationwide apprentice

Michael Kilner, a third-year panel apprentice at Nationwide Accident Repair Services, has qualified for the final of this year’s IMI Skill Auto competition, taking place today and tomorrow in Birmingham.

The competition sees students and apprentices compete in a range of practices, including automotive refinishing, and automotive body repair.

To be named as a finalist, he completed an online test, in which he came in the top 18 apprentices in the country. From there he took part in a practical examination, and was successful in coming in the top six within his category.

Michael said, ‘I am really excited about getting through to the finals. It felt like an eternity waiting for the results to come through, but when I got the phone call to say I had made it I was in complete shock. All I can say is thank you to everybody at Nationwide and my family for supporting me, in particular Dave Hopkins my mentor, I wouldn’t have gotten this far if it wasn’t for him. I’m really looking forward to the finals.’

IMI Skill Auto is a gateway to WorldSkills, the biggest vocational education and skills excellence event in the world. Nationwide paint technician and former apprentice Daryl Head succeeded in securing the silver medal at WorldSkills this year, and Michael will hope to follow in his footsteps.

His general manager Paul Garbett said, ‘I’m extremely proud of Michael for getting through to the finals. It’s a true reflection of his hard work and that of his mentor Dave Hopkins. I will be going along to Birmingham in order to support him and cheer him on. Michael is a demonstration of exactly what can be achieved through hard work and commitment and he has a great future with Nationwide.’

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