Trade associations meet annually to select the Swiss champions from among the top young professionals in their fields. The Swiss skills championships also serve as the qualifiers for the European and world championships. The State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation SERI supports vocational championships at various levels.
The SwissSkills foundation
The SwissSkills foundation organises Swiss participation in the international EuroSkills and WorldSkills vocational competitions, as well as providing trade associations with advice and support as they stage the Swiss vocational championships. SwissSkills raises awareness of the competition among the general public and provides students with the opportunity to discover their strengths and realise their potential. SERI has supported the foundation’s activities since 2002, on the basis of the Vocational and Professional Education and Training Act.
Swiss championships – SwissSkills
The Swiss vocational championships are organised by trade organisations. Apprentices in their final year of training are eligible to compete, with selection criteria varying among the trade organisations. Young professionals get the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities at the competition, while trade organisations use the Swiss vocational championships to select the competitors who will represent them at the international EuroSkills and WorldSkills vocational championships.
The competitions, which are open to the public, help recruit the next generation of young professionals by giving young people, parents and the general public insight into various professions. Individual competition events take place in training centres, on-site at companies and at event venues. Swiss championships are also organised nationally at regular intervals; the competition has thus far taken place three times in Bern as SwissSkills. SERI provides funding for these events in accordance with the Vocational and Professional Education and Training Act.
EuroSkills and WorldSkills vocational competitions
Talented young professionals from across Europe come to EuroSkills to compete for the prestigious title of European champion.
Held every two years, WorldSkills competitions are the largest events in the world relating to vocational training. Some of the world’s best young professionals put their trade-specific skills to the test within a framework of high international standards. Competition days are a unique highlight in the world of vocational training, as a broad public attends the championship to watch the apprentices at work.