By David Hanson MP / Latest News / 0 Comments

First National Celebration of Vocational Qualifications Launched

Delyn MP David Hanson is supporting the launch of VQ Day – the first nationwide day to celebrate vocational success – and is encouraging local colleges and learning providers to get involved. 


‘VQ Day’ has been created to raise public awareness about the value of vocational qualifications.  VQ Day, due to be held on 23rd July 2008, will be marked by a national event in London, as well as regional events held by colleges and learning providers around the country. The Day will also see the publication of a report into the vocational qualifications landscape.


David Hanson said:


“The launch of VQ Day is a huge step forward for the world of vocational learning.  A vocational qualification can set people up for life and it is high time that the hard work of colleges, students and employers is recognised nationally in this way.”


Plans for the Day are being led by education foundation, Edge, and are supported by the wider education community including exam boards, employers’ organisations, the Association of Colleges and the Association of Learning Providers.  An action pack is also available for colleges and learning providers to download in order for them to hold their own VQ Day celebrations.


A roll call of vocational success has been established at for past and present vocational learners to log on and add their name to the list. Visitors to the website can also vote for their Celebrity VQ Hero 2008. The shortlist of five celebrities, all of whom have made their name after gaining a vocational qualification will be announced shortly.


Andy Powell, CEO of Edge also hopes the Day will counter the prejudice which sees less than half (44 per cent) of the population agree that vocational qualifications are as important as A-Levels:


“Every year millions of people across the country study for and gain a vocational qualification, leading to further vocational study or university, better jobs and enhanced skills. However, despite these clear benefits, vocational qualifications sadly do not enjoy the prestige of their more academic counterparts.  The launch of VQ Day is just one step in starting to put this right.”


For more information visit




For interviews, case studies, online videos, background information or more detail on plans for 23rd July, please contact:

Heather Wilson or Zoe Penn, Band & Brown Communications, 020 7419 6950 /vqday(at)


Notes to Editors

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 4,173 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 15th – 18th April 2008.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).


According to the Census 2001 (Office of National Statistics), there are 45,434,897 adults aged 18 and over, 38 per cent of this figure is 17,265,261.



About VQ Day – 23rd July 2008

  • Millions of people take a vocational qualification every year leading them on to further vocational study or university, better jobs and/or enhanced skills. For too long, this success has gone without the recognition and celebration it deserves.  To raise the profile of vocational qualifications and celebrate vocational success ‘VQ Day’ is being launched.  VQ Day will be an official celebration of the people who gain vocational qualifications every year, and the people who help them achieve this success.
  • Plans for VQ Day are being led by Edge, the education foundation, in conjunction with the vocational qualifications community including, OCR, Federation of Awarding Bodies, Department for Innovation, University & Skills (DIUS), Edexcel, City & Guilds, EDI, Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM), Qualifications & Curriculum Authority (QCA), fforwm and the Association of Colleges,  Ealing, Hammersmith and West London College among others.
  • VQ Day will be launched at a parliamentary reception at the House of Commons on 23rd April and the inaugural Day will take place nationwide on 23rd July 2008.  A national celebration event will be held in London to showcase the diversity of vocational success, accompanied by a report examining the vocational qualifications landscape in the country.  It is hoped that regional events will also be staged and that VQ Day will help raise the profile, and communicate the value, of vocational qualifications to future students, potential employers and the wider public.
  • A roll call of vocational success is being established online, with all learners past and present invited to add their name to the list of people across the UK who have gained a vocational qualification.  In addition, honorary vocational qualifications will be awarded on VQ Day to ‘VQ Heroes’ who embody vocational success.


About Edge

  • Edge is dedicated to raising the profile of vocational and practical learning, with a skills rather than an academic focus. It wants educational standards raised through applying practical experience to learning and providing opportunities to excel through vocational, as well as academic, studies. Edge believes that this is essential for the future competitiveness of the nation.  For more information visit