Iceland‘s toughest tradesman is a competition, organised by non-government stakeholders, complementing efforts by national education authorities and the industry to promote VET among young learners. It is increasingly popular among the general public. The judging process, which took place in December 2019, included:
- listeners to FM Radio X-977 and readers of related news website visir.is nominated candidates;
- a special jury selected ten candidates from the group of nominees to be put up for digital vote by the public;
- the public voted via the news website.
The winner was Ms. Malín Frid, an electrical distribution technician at Reykjavik Energy‘s distribution subsidiary Veitur. The vote drew press attention as Malin had done her job under severe weather conditions, repairing some ageing badly damaged electrical distribution lines during a heavy snow storm in northern Iceland. Malin‘s sense of social responsibility (as her efforts restored electricity in households that were without it for days) and her professional integrity not only increased public‘s support during her nomination but also enhanced the popularity of the competition itself.
The competition demonstrates that increasing the attractiveness of VET has become a collective effort in Iceland, with individual initiatives joining and complementing those of the State and social partners.