Upskilling the Midwest – In sport as well as business, it’s all about lifelong learning!

Eight Skillnet learning networks based in the Midwest in partnership with the MidWest Regional Skills forum combined forces to organise the annual Upskilling the MidWest event today (30 April).  Skillnet Networks provide workforce development supports for businesses and this annual event aims to increase awareness of the many resources available to companies in the Midwest region to help upskill their employees and enhance lifelong learning opportunities.

The event, held in the expansive venue of the Limerick Racecourse, was attended by over 250 people from small and large companies across Clare, Limerick and Tipperary.  Attendees heard from an inspiring line-up of speakers who discussed the value that highly-skilled workers add to their businesses and teams and the untold benefits of continuous learning. The keynote was delivered by John Kiely, the acclaimed Limerick Hurling Manager who discussed ‘how to build and motivate a high-performing team and the value of being always open to learning, learning from our own experiences and learning from the experiences of others’.

Damien Walsh, Engineering Director with ON Semiconductor also spoke about how Skillnet training has helped his company develop their workforce and find new talent ‘Through the Skillnet employee activation programme ON Semiconductor have accessed workers with the relevant skills and qualifications which are in high demand in our sector, this has helped us to stay ahead of our competition and has also helped develop our existing workforce’.

Dave Flynn, Executive Director at Skillnet Ireland said:

Sourcing and retaining the right talent are key priorities for companies across Ireland. As the labour market continues to tighten, we are seeing skills and talent gaps emerging across a wide range of sectors and regions. Events like Upskilling the Midwest provide businesses with valuable insights into upskilling strategies, as well as practical supports, that can help address the challenges they are facing.”

Skillnet Networks consist of companies within the same sector or region and with similar training needs and help companies to identify the skills needed to make their business more competitiveThe eight Skillnet Learning Networks involved in the event were Aviation Skillnet, Cobotics Skillnet, ICBE Advanced Productivity Skillnet, ICBE Business Excellence Skillnet, Irish Medtech Skillnet, Limerick Chamber Skillnet, Next Level Skillnet and Shannon Chamber Skillnet. All eight are based in the Midwest.

To find out more about a Skillnet Learning Network, visit