The four medal winners from Blum: Lucas Dolinar (CAD Design), Mike Fink (CNC Milling), Lukas Schwärzler (Industrial Mechanics) and Kevin Emhofer (CNC Turning) (from left to right)


At EuroSkills 2021, the European vocational skills championship, young skilled professionals from across Europe came together in Graz to demonstrate their various skills. The four participants from Blum showcased their talent and took home one silver and three bronze medals.

At the seventh European vocational skills championship, which was the first to be held in Austria, Kevin Emhofer (CNC Turning), Mike Fink (CNC Milling), Lukas Schwärzler (Industrial Mechanics) and Lucas Dolinar (CAD Design) were the four young professionals to take part from Blum. And the result is certainly something to be proud of: the quartet from Graz took home one silver and three bronze medals.

Silver medal for Kevin Emhofer

The 22-year-old from Hoechst beat some tough competition in the CNC Turning category to take home the silver medal. “At first I was just looking at my workpiece and thinking, how am I supposed to do this in the time I have? But then I just started to put into practice what I’ve learnt step by step,” says Kevin Emhofer, giving an insight into the competition. As he had just completed his national service, there was little time for him to prepare: “That’s why I never expected to come away with silver. The team spirit with the coaches and the other candidates was invaluable. It took the pressure off me and meant that I was never alone throughout the long competition. It feels really good to have the medal around my neck now,” says the European championship silver medallist in CNC Turning.

The EuroSkills Blum team, consisting of participants, coaches and experts, was delighted by the outstanding results

hree bronze medals round off a marvellous result

“We spent months preparing. The level at EuroSkills is really high and the three days of competition are very challenging. It feels fantastic to know that all the work was worth it and I’m happy that we were able to showcase our skills. The medal is the perfect reward,” says Mike Fink with a smile, as he reflects on his bronze medal in CNC Milling.

Lucas Dolinar also secured third place in CAD Design: “The long and intense training that I did to prepare paid off and everything went to plan for me at EuroSkills. I just wanted a medal. I didn’t mind whether it was bronze, silver or gold. This made the feeling of actually going up onto the podium even sweeter,” explains the 22-year-old. The fourth member of the Blum team also impressed in the Industrial Mechanics category of the international competition and took home a bronze medal: “It wasn’t always plain sailing during the competition. I really had to keep a cool head. Right up until the end, I wasn’t sure if I’d done enough. Getting a medal is an indescribable feeling,” says Lukas Schwärzler.

Exceptional performances by apprentices and instructors

An international competition is always an exciting challenge for apprentices and instructors alike: “We are extremely proud of all our competitors and overjoyed by their outstanding achievements,” stresses Dieter Hämmerle, head of vocational training at Blum. “The best of the best compete at EuroSkills. The right frame of mind, nerves of steel and tolerances of a thousandth of a millimetre are crucial here. Our intensive preparation, which includes mental coaching and team building exercises, has definitely paid off,” explains Hämmerle, adding: “We are delighted that EuroSkills 2021 took place – despite all the setbacks.

Blum Head of Vocational Training Dieter Hämmerle was more than happy with the performance of the competitors at EuroSkills 2021

“This international competition is very important to us as a company that believes in training and apprenticeships because it also puts the quality of our vocational training to the test time and time again. Everyone is talking about the shortage of skilled professionals. These kinds of competitions are all the more reason to help counteract this. Next time, I hope that we can compete with even more participants – and perhaps some female competitors too.”

Additional participants from Vorarlberg in Graz

Two more apprentices from Blum, Jonas Brunner and Marc Domig, were able to participate without official scoring, using the event as an opportunity to prepare for the upcoming national championship. Four coaches and three experts from the Blum team of instructors were on hand at the big event and supported the young, skilled professionals. “Team Vorarlberg” is completed by three other participants and one jury member from the Vorarlberg-based company. A total of 450 competitors across 45 professions took part – from 23 to 25 September 2021, they competed for the coveted title of European champion in their categories.