In February 2018, some of our lucky hairdressing Traineeship learners are embarking on an incredible two week trip to Finland’s cool capital, Helsinki, with Erasmus+.
Visiting different salons each day, the learners will spend time learning from trade experts at Stadin Ammatitopisto and other top hairdressers in the city.
By the end of the trip, the group will be able to demonstrate new technical vocational skills to their peers in ACT centres as well as on their placements, thus developing their capability levels in hair types and techniques. The project which aims to enrich learners’ experience, motivating them to stretch and challenge themselves to gain employment or future promotion opportunities, whilst also enhancing their skill sets.
The lucky learners who will be hairdressing in Helsinki are:
During their first preparatory workshop, we caught up with the learners embarking on the trip to find out what they’re looking forward to most.
Lucas Froud, currently looking for a placement through our Cardiff Skills Academy, told us why he decided to apply for this opportunity:
“I am interested in learning new skills, and I also enjoy travelling and immersing myself in different cultures so this trip really appealed to me. Some other countries, for example, use fires to cut hair so it will be really interesting to see the Finnish hairdressers’ methods and compare the differences.”
Saffron Feneck, from our Cardiff Skills Academy, is also looking forward to learning from stylists in another country. She said: “It’s a great opportunity to get out of the centre and learn techniques from new people. I haven’t been out on a placement yet so this will be my first chance to test my skills outside the centre. If possible I’d love to develop my braiding abilities.”
Courtney Flowers, also a Traineeship learner from our Cardiff Skills Academy said “I am enjoying my placement at Gemini Hair Design in Cardiff, but I am excited to go on a trip away from home and learn new skills and experience new things.”
Courtney’s friend Elise Lewis is also part of the group going to Helsinki. She started her Traineeship at our Cardiff Skills Academy, and is currently on placement at Rapture Hair Studio in Cardiff. She echoes Courtney’s words, saying that she applied for the trip to experience something different and learn new skills.
The other learners embarking on the trip are Tegan Toogood and Charlie Thomas from our Aberdare Skills Centre, who are also both on placement at Katz Kutz in Mountain Ash. Charlie says she is most looking forward to exploring a new country having never been to Finland before, and Tegan is excited to learn new techniques in a new environment as well as a new language.
As well as aiming to improve the learners’ hairdressing techniques and enhance their career prospects, the project also endeavours to improve their language skills. In the run up to the trip, the learners will be undertaking some language workshops to try and master the basics of the Finnish language. With none of the learners, or accompanying staff, having visited Finland before, or possessing any knowledge of the language, this will certainly be an adventure for the whole group!
Cheryl Evans, ACT’s Hair, Beauty and Barbering Coordinator, commented: “I’m really excited for the learners to have such a brilliant opportunity with Erasmus+. They’ll gain invaluable work experience as well as cultural experience, which will hopefully inspire and spur them on in their qualifications with ACT and future careers.”
Erasmus+ is the European Union programme for education, training, youth and sport. It runs for seven years, from 2014 to 2020, with organisations invited to apply for funding each year to undertake creative and worthwhile activities.
ACT joined up with two other training providers including Portal, to form a consortia bid for funding. The three committed training providers strive to offer opportunities for learners regardless to broaden their horizons, strengthen their knowledge base and competency levels, develop outstanding transferable skills and support learners to be an employer’s first choice for employment and/or promotion opportunities.