Skill Up West Somerset

About Us

The Skill Up service has been funded by the Department for Education and we are working in partnership with Somerset County Council, West Somerset & Taunton Deane District Council, West Somerset Opportunity Area Project Board and the Dorset & Somerset Training Provider Network.  

The aim of our project is to bring a high quality, local and impartial service to West Somerset to help in supporting the local community and its businesses workforce Up Skill.  Not forgetting this is a FREE service.

We want to support you with the challenges that businesses face with recruitment and skills gaps,help you to progress in your career or even make those first steps in gaining or returning to employment.

Marie and Jane are on hand to support you on your Skills and Apprenticeship journeys.

Meet our team

Marie Howard

Marie was born in Somerset and has lived in West Somerset with her Husband and two young children since 2009.

Marie has a degree in Counselling and is passionate about skills and training and has worked in the field in a number of roles supporting both learners, particularly apprentices and employers of all sizes and across all sectors.

Marie’s career started with a small (now large) training Provider and has involved spells with government bodies such as the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) and National Apprenticeship Service and more latterly with the National Careers Service where as a Senior Partnership Manager she has been working across the West of England and in particular with Employers to use their experience and success through skills to inspire young people and more mature employees to improve their skills base and in so doing improve their career prospects.

Jane Parker

Jane has lived in Somerset for 13 years. She is a qualified Careers and Skills Adviser with experience in providing impartial Information advice and guidance to all ages.

Her career started with a training provider in Wiltshire as an apprenticeship co-ordinator before the move to Somerset. She was then employed by Connexions as a Careers Adviser achieving her Post Graduate Qualification in Careers Guidance.

Her experience of working in West Somerset has included the position of Connexions Careers Advisor in West Somerset College. She has also worked with young people and adults in the wider community who were looking for support with finding work or training. 

She is a strong advocate of apprenticeships as an alternative route to gaining skills and qualifications. 



All of your local training providers working together to ensure we have the highest quality training to meet then needs of our local community and employers skills needs.  The network comprises of 42 colleges and independent training providers.  

For more information on the training that the DSTPN offer, or support with engaging in other training provision outside of the Network contact Marie 

We can support your Apprenticeship and Skills journey.