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News

Advanced Engineering donates equipment worth £7,000

 

Refrigeration and air conditioning students will have access to the latest equipment thanks to a generous donation from Advanced Engineering.
 
The company, based in Hampshire, has given Bath College six Bosch Promax reclaim recovery units, worth £7,000, for use in the refrigeration and air conditioning workshop.
 
Sales engineer Ethan Blackwood and sales manager Luke Levens visited the college to deliver the equipment and recycle old equipment.
 
Mr Levens said: “We’ll look after them for three years, we’ll service and keep them running as part of a long-term project investing in supporting colleges.
 
“It’s giving the students the best start to their career with the best machines in the market. Promax is a market leader known for its quality.
 
“Once they get used to using this equipment, they can keep using it after college. The students are the future of the industry and it’s only right that we support them.”
 
Advanced Engineering is the UK distributor for the Bosch Promax units, which are used to remove refrigerant from cooling systems.
 
Last term, Mr Levens visited to speak to refrigeration students about the company’s products and he has another talk booked for April next year.
 
Bath College lecturer Simon Robinson said: “It’s a big donation for us because this is one of the most expensive pieces of equipment.
 
“It’s important to have the right equipment, and when we have employers visit they can see that we’re working with the right industry people.”
 
Bath College is one of 15 colleges in the UK offering air conditioning and refrigeration qualifications, from Level 1 to Level 3.
 
The majority of students studying refrigeration and air-conditioning are apprentices, who are sponsored by their employers.
 

News

Bath Soup Project launched at the Bath College Shrubbery Restaurant

 

A new crowdfunding project raising money for community organisations in Bath with a simple bowl of soup is off to a flying start.
 
The first Bath Soup Project, held at Bath College, raised £510 for a peer mentoring scheme run by the Southside Young Advocates.
 
Guests paid £5 on the door and were served with a free bowl of soup made by the students and a chunk of bread in the Bath College Shrubbery Restaurant.
 
launch
 
Pictures by Aaron Eagling-Vose 
 
After networking, they listened to a pitch from five community organisations and voted on who should receive the money collected.
 
The Southside Young Advocates are working in local schools to set up a peer mentoring scheme and talk to teachers about bullying.
 
Kai Fletcher, 17, from the Southside Young Advocates, said: “Bath is a city with a large number of vulnerable young people needing support with complex issues. Southside Young Advocates feel passionately about spreading their message and providing a service in our local communities.
 
“We know there have been times in our lives where we would have greatly benefitted from a programme similar to what we plan to offer, so we are committed to ensuring others do not experience the same struggles alone.”
 
Also pitching on the day were Vegmead, the Bath Stroke Support Group, Bath and North East Somerset Dementia Action Alliance and the Work Skills Centre at Three Ways School.
 
International business students from Bath College are volunteering with the Bath Stroke Support Group and led the pitch for the charity.
 
Students from the college also gave up their time to serve the soup, provide musical entertainment and document the event with photography and video.
 
The event attracted plenty of support from local businesses, including Picnic Coffee, Lovejoys, Waitrose, Morrisons, The Thoughtful Bread Company, Mitie, Morgan Brinkhurst Consultancy, Mailboxes ETC and The Business Exchange.
 
There were a number of important visitors, including the Deputy Mayor, the Chair of Bath and North East Somerset Council, and three visiting peers from the House of Lords.
 
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Julie Poll, Business Connector, Bath & NE Somerset, said: “The Soup Project is a crowd funding event for community projects and originates from Detroit.
 
“I saw this initiative firstly as an opportunity to bring together people who share a desire for a better community and secondly to fully demonstrate the themes we all focus on in our business connector role – education, employability, enterprise and community cohesion.
 
“I am most grateful to my fellow team members – Mike Plows, from the Volunteer Centre, Simon Brand (volunteer) and Lucy Beattie, from Bath College.
 
“It was absolutely fantastic to hear the pitches. The room was buzzing and it was difficult to make a decision on the winning project. In my opinion they were all winners – they are all volunteers trying to do amazing things for their community.”
 
Lucy Beattie, employability adviser at Bath College, was part of the team working to make the first event a success.
 
She said: “It was an amazing networking event for people interested in supporting local organisations and a great opportunity for Bath College students to be involved in a real-life project.
 
“The Southside Young Advocates won £510 with an impressive pitch, but all the charities benefitted. In fact, a local builder spoke to us about resurfacing a car park and building an outdoor seating area for the Works Skills Centre at Three Ways School.”
 

News

Students work with some of the city’s best chefs to create delicious four-course menu

 

Students at Bath College had the chance to work with some of the city’s best chefs at a four-course networking dinner for professionals in the hospitality and catering industry.
 
Organised by the Chefs’ Forum, the dinner was held at the Bath College Shrubbery Restaurant and included a special ‘pay what you can’ lunch raising £1,000 for industry charity Hospitality Action.
 
The Chefs’ Forum was created to mentor, motivate and inspire young talent by connecting chefs with education providers and industry suppliers in the South West.
 
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Top chefs at the event included David Campbell, Executive Head Chef at The Royal Crescent, Bath, Head Chef Daniel Moon, from The Gainsborough Hotel, and Michael Topp and Martin Black, from The Manor House Hotel.
 
Lucknam Park chefs Elly Wentworth and Dean Westcar also volunteered their time. Elly, Junior Sous Chef at Lucknam Park, is appearing on MasterChef: The Professionals, airing on BBC2 on Tuesday November 8 at 8pm.
 
Students from Bath College joined forces with the visiting chefs and learners from Hit Training to finish and plate each of the courses, and to serve eighty hungry guests.
 
Bridget Halford, Head of Hospitality at Bath College said: “Today’s Chefs’ Lunch was an amazing experience for the students. It was a real privilege for them to work with such talented chefs from across the Bath area and a fabulous opportunity for the students to showcase their skills to local employers.
 
“Every seat in our restaurant was filled and an impressive £1000 raised for industry charity, Hospitality Action, we are delighted with this!”
 
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Bath College Principal Laurel Penrose said: “I have been really impressed with the food and organisation of today’s Chefs’ Lunch at the college.
 
“The Chefs’ Forum supports the college in an extremely positive and productive way, specifically in terms of raising the profile of our learners and our fantastically equipped facilities to potential employers in Bath and the surrounding area.
 
“The meal was delicious and it was an excellent opportunity for our students to network with top chefs, suppliers and learning peers.”
 
The Chefs’ Forum chose to stage a ‘pay what you can’ event to give chefs the chance to sample the very best in local cooking, at a price they could afford whilst making money for Hospitality Action.
 
Hospitality Action helps chefs and hospitality professionals overcome problems with stress, debt, drug and alcohol issues.
 
Participating chefs and sponsors all donated ingredients, driving down the food cost and allowing The Chefs’ Forum to raise vital funds for industry people who fall on hard times.
 
Sponsors included: A.David, Total Produce, Kingfisher Brixham, Walter Rose & Son and Easy Jose.
 
Catherine Farinha, Founder of The Chefs’ Forum, said: “The work Hospitality Action does is vital in offering support to hospitality people when they fall on hard times.
 
“It is great that The Chefs’ Forum can help in raising the profile of Hospitality Action to chefs on a regional level, highlighting the work it does.
 
“It is great to know that the money raised will go towards helping those in need. This lunch was a fabulous chance for current and future chefs and front of house professionals to witness first-hand, industry-leading cookery and first class service where cost was not an obstacle to them doing so.”
 
The Bath College Shrubbery Restaurant in Avon Street is open to the public and is well-known amongst local foodies for its delicious three-course lunches and fine dining banquets.
 

News

Apprentices head to The Skills Show to compete in national finals

 

Three apprentices from Bath College will compete at The Skills Show at the NEC in Birmingham after performing highly in a challenging set of regional heats.
 
Attracting thousands of visitors every year, the Skills Show is the UK’s largest skills and careers event. It plays host to the finals of the national SkillFRIDGE competition and the WorldSkills UK national finals.
 
Adam Jackson, an apprentice with Space Engineering, and Steven Monk, an apprentice with the Bath-based company Ambient Engineering Limited, have both been entered for the SkillFRIDGE finals.
 
Stonemasonry apprentice Joshua Underwood, is also competing against other stonemasons in the WorldSkills UK national finals after coming third in his regional heat.
 
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Steven, 30, was the winner of the second SkillFRIDGE regional heat, held at Bath College. He said: “We will take it in our stride and do the best we can.
 
“The competition isn’t going to be easy, but it’s good experience. When you’re working in the industry, every job you do is at a different site and presents itself with different issues, so you have to be adaptable.”
 
SkillFRIDGE is a national competition for apprentices studying air conditioning and refrigeration from Level 2 to Level 3. Both Steven and Adam, 31, have been part of a training programme organised by Toshiba for SkillFRIDGE finalists.
 
The programme covered technical knowledge and practical skills in relation to residential and light commercial air conditioning, including installation, servicing and maintenance.
 
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Adam said: “My employer was really pleased to see me get through to the finals. I’m looking forward to networking, seeing some of the new equipment and finding out what’s changing within the industry.
 
“Simon entered us into the competition because we were the best students he has. We’re showcasing his teaching and the type of students he has. It’s nice to have that sort of confidence in your skills. To be picked says something quite positive about us.”
 
Stonemasonry student Joshua Underwood was in his first year of studying at Bath College when he was picked for the WorldSkills UK national finals.
 
In March, Joshua, who works as an apprentice at Architectural Stone in Cardiff, was chosen to receive tools from the Worshipful Company of Masons in London as an outstanding first year student.
 
The 25-year-old said: “In the regional competition at Weymouth, I thought I had done really badly and I came third. That was a surprise. I have only been doing this for a year and a half, so there are a lot of mouldings that I haven’t worked on.
 
“I was one of the last people to start working on the stone in Weymouth, I spent a lot of time doing the templates, marking up the stone and thinking about what it would look like – that approach obviously worked.
 
“I will be nervous on the morning of the competition, but I’m pleased to be doing well in the trade. It’s great studying at Bath College. Everyone helps each other and everyone is like-minded. I learn a lot here.”
 
Daisy Walsh, Head of Department, said: “I’m thrilled that our students are able to demonstrate excellence in teaching and learning at Bath College. I wish everyone success at the Skills Show.”
 
The Skills Show takes place from November 17 to November 19.
 


 

Interested in an apprenticeship? Let us know!

 

 


 

What are the next steps to becoming an apprentice?

 

Our programmes are designed for young people who have either found an employer who will take on an apprentice, or for those looking to find an employer.
Please complete the form below giving details of the apprenticeship you want to take and the employer who has offered you a placement.

 

 

Register your interest in becoming an Apprentice using the form above.
 
 

College Placement Officer contacts you to discuss the next steps.
 
 

Interviews, start dates and enrollments are arranged for you.
 
 

You begin paid employment through the programme.
 

 

News

Students trained to host and run workshops at TEDxYouth@Bath

 

Students studying performing arts, international business and media are getting ready to welcome 900 young people to TEDxYouth@Bath.
 

TEDxYouth@Bath is a one-day event aiming to spark conversation and spread debate through inspirational speakers and workshops.
 

The students, from Bath College, will be helping to host the event and run workshops in the lunchtime break.
 

TEDxYouth@Bath is one of the first organisations to partner with the college after the launch of the Bath College Academy of Business.
 

The Academy of Business was launched in September to give students valuable industry experience, and in turn, boost the local South West economy.
 

Students will work alongside 20 inspirational speakers at TEDxYouth@Bath, including BBC security correspondent Frank Gardner.
 

At the workshops, they will be encouraging people to get involved testing a vlogging booth, creating cartoons and writing a postcard to be sent to yourself in a year’s time.
 

Volunteer coordinators Charlotte Calkin and Julian Hussey are volunteering with students to pass on their advice and train them to run the workshops.
 

Recently, students took part in a presentation skills workshop with Charlotte, a communications expert and executive coach.
 

The group will also be working with live event specialists Judgeday, the team behind the Cornbury Music Festival and Womad.
 

Media students are getting involved by helping technical organiser Cathleen Lynott with the slideshows, sound and lighting.
 

Volunteer coordinator Julian Hussey said: “Every year we run our TEDx event, we try to involve more young people in making it happen.
 

“This collaboration with Bath College’s Academy of Business has given us a brilliant cohort of young volunteers who are not only critical to engaging their peers in the event but are learning so much in the process.”
 

Jon Domaille, Head of Department for Business, Music, Media and Performing Arts, said: “Whether you’re a performer or working within a business environment, the ability to communicate, be confidence, think on your feet and engage with an audience are all vital skills.
 

“This is why this project is so exciting and valuable for our students. It will provide them with the perfect opportunity to develop important employability skills and put these to the test in a live scenario.
 

“It’s been amazing watching the students working with TEDxYouth in preparation for the event. They are taking a tremendous amount from the whole experience.”
 

News

Apprentice of the month: Lauren and Tom from ESPA UK

 

This month, we have two apprentices for our apprentice of the month feature. Lauren Atwell and Tom Sproson are both working with the European Student Placement Agency (ESPA UK) as Level 2 business administration apprentices. They are coming to the end of their apprenticeships and will be finishing their time as an apprentice with a four-week work experience programme at a college in Austria.
 
ESPA UK provides six-month work placements for EU undergraduates, linking them with corporate companies and independent businesses throughout the UK. The company, based in Bath, was recently chosen as Business Employer of the Year at Bath College’s Celebrating Success Awards Ceremony for embracing the ethos of the apprenticeship scheme and giving Lauren and Tom some amazing opportunities.
 
What do you do in your job as an apprentice at ESPA UK?
 
Lauren
We share similar job roles managing student registrations. As part of this, I make welcome packs for students coming to do internships and upload internship vacancies onto the ESPA UK portal. I also work with our marketing intern to come up with ideas for social media and I’ve arranged this year’s Christmas party.
 
Tom
I deal with student registrations and handle incoming CVs. I’m responsible for promoting internal vacancies to universities and responding to queries from universities. We both spend time answering calls and e-mails on a day to day basis. I’m also in charge of stationary, I make sure the office is stocked up with stationary supplies.
 
Can you tell me a bit about why you applied for an apprenticeship?
 
Lauren
I didn’t really want to go to university, I didn’t want to study full-time, so I was looking for an apprenticeship. I was originally working in Canterbury in a travel shop before I came to live in Bath and spotted this opportunity. An apprenticeship is great because you’re getting work experience and a qualification at the same time – you don’t get that at university.
 
Tom
I was looking for something to increase my skill level. I thought I would try an apprenticeship to take a step up and make myself more desirable as an employee. I had a couple of jobs beforehand. I worked in a nursery, in an admin job and then I got an engineering job, which involved a lot of heavy lifting. I found this opportunity and I’ve never looked back since.
 
What was it like starting out as an apprentice?
 
Lauren
I didn’t know what to expect when I first started here, but from the first interview with Madeline and Colin I knew they were genuinely nice people. They have lived up to that reputation, they have made it easy for us to grow and develop. If you looked at me a year ago, I was a different person. I’ve developed my confidence and my ability to communicate. Before I used to be anxious and nervous, even speaking on the phone and in meetings. I can’t thank them enough, my apprenticeship has been a really positive experience.
 
Tom
I’ve learnt how to improve myself within a business environment. I’ve taken on new responsibilities and learned how to listen to feedback. Communication is very important in this particular environment. I’ve learnt how to communicate with colleagues so that we’re working together and not overlapping on jobs.
 
How excited are you to be travelling out to Austria?
 
Tom
I’m very excited. It will give us an insight into the way that ESPA works. I will be challenging myself, learning from a new experience and gaining new skills – and that’s really valuable. Before I came to ESPA I hadn’t travelled a lot. Now I’ve travelled to Milan and I’ve been to London and Canterbury.
 
Lauren
It’s going to be very different, we’re going to be working in a country where they don’t speak English. I’ve never done anything like this before, but this is what ESPA is all about.
 
Do you have any tips for someone looking for/starting an apprenticeship?
 
Lauren
I would say find the right opportunity for you. Think about what you’re interested in learning about and try and find something based on that. Because you’re working you get to see what employers want from you as an employee. I think employers really value that experience.
You’re not going to be busy the first couple of days, so don’t expect too much too quickly. You have to let things come to you as you grow into the role and take on more responsibility.
 
Tom
When I was looking I applied for one apprenticeship at a time and tried to see how it went. I hadn’t heard of ESPA before and it seemed really interesting and the type of thing I wanted to do. I would say ‘go for it’. If you’re looking to get a job and experience at the same time, an apprenticeship is the best thing you can possibly do.
 


 

Interested in an apprenticeship? Let us know!

 

 


 

What are the next steps to becoming an apprentice?

 

Our programmes are designed for young people who have either found an employer who will take on an apprentice, or for those looking to find an employer.
Please complete the form below giving details of the apprenticeship you want to take and the employer who has offered you a placement.

 

 

Register your interest in becoming an Apprentice using the form above.
 
 

College Placement Officer contacts you to discuss the next steps.
 
 

Interviews, start dates and enrollments are arranged for you.
 
 

You begin paid employment through the programme.
 

 

News

Media make-up students transform actors for Fear at Avon Valley

 

Media make-up students at Bath College are taking part in some scary work experience with Fear at Avon Valley this Halloween.
 
The scare attraction, at Avon Valley Adventure and Wildlife Park, is up and running for a third year terrifying hundreds of visitors every night.
 
There are three different scare mazes, as well as a street theatre with stilt walkers and a fire show led by Frank the masked clown.
 
Level 3 media make-up students at Bath College are using their skills to get actors at the attraction looking as scary as possible.
 
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Taking part has given them a chance to experience what it’s like to work as a team under pressure on a live event.
 
Bath College media make-up trainer and assessor Helen Eyre said: “There are three different mazes within Fear – anarchy, purgatory and phobia.
 
“They all have different make-up and there’s also a street team. Our big priority is making sure the street team looks amazing and to help with make-up changes.
 
“The first hour and a half is intense. You have ten to 15 minutes to do each design, but it’s really good fun and the girls have stepped up to the task.
 
“It’s a really great experience for them. Often within the college, we’re very generous with time. At the event they have to work under pressure and that in itself is a really valuable lesson for them. “
 
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Students studying for Level 3 media make-up at Bath College are asked to complete 15 hours of volunteering and 30 hours of work experience.
 
On the course, they learn about cosmetic, photographic and camouflage make-up, as well as face and body art and how to cast small prosthetic pieces.
 
Last term, media make-up students worked with performing arts students at the college on make-up for their production of Sweeny Todd.
 
At Fear, they have been teaching actors some basic make-up techniques, including bruises and cuts, and how to make yourself look ill or gaunt.
 
Helen said: “The idea is that it’s a scare attraction and the designs are there to challenge people. The challenge is to make it as scary as possible within the time frames we have been given.
 
“Most of it is in darkness, so a lot of designs are strong and bold so that people can see them. As the actors go out of the gates, we flick fake blood at them as they walk past.
 
“There’s definitely a lot of screaming every night.”
 
Bath College is looking for more work experience opportunities for media make-up students. Please e-mail Helen.Eyre@bathcollege.ac.uk
 

News

Free courses to develop computer literacy skills

 

Bath College is offering new courses for people who want to develop their computer literacy skills and get up to date with technology.
 

The courses, run by the Adult Community Learning Team at the Somer Valley Campus in Radstock, are free for people aged nineteen and over.
 

They are aimed at people who want to improve their chances to find work, support their family or live independently.
 

The first course, computers for work, is a four-week course covering key computing skills starting on November 2nd.
 

People can also join workshops in Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint on November 3rd, November 10th and November 17th.
 

You can join as many workshops as you like and learn how to make a document, work with data and presentation techniques.
 

On November 24, there is a Microsoft Outlook course, followed by a one-off workshop on December 9th teaching you how to stay safe online.
 

The Adult Community Learning Team are also running computer confidence sessions, for people who are complete beginners, in January.
 

Alex Ewins, 78, has just finished the ‘Get started with iPads’ course so that he can use an iPad with his grandchildren.
 

He said: “My grandchildren use the iPad. My six-year-old grandson knows more than I do, so I thought it was time to do something about that.
 

“I’m just beginning to get the hang of it – at least I know how to turn it on and off! It’s a really wonderful course and a friendly group.
 

“I would recommend it to anyone, in fact I’m keen to find out about the next course for my wife who missed this one.”
 

All workshops are held during the day. For more information or to enrol, please e-mail lynsey.parsons@bathcollege.ac.uk or call (01225) 328 822

News

Professional chefs and ex-students return to Bath College for surprise retirement party

 

Bath College student Liam Targett with Garry Rosser, Micail Swindells, Jon Howe, Claire Wilkins, Stuart Ash, Fred Hall (from Bath College) and Andre Garrett
 
A top team of six professional chefs helped to turn a six-course gourmet dinner at Bath College into a surprise retirement party.
 
All six chefs started their careers at Bath College and have gone on to excel in the hospitality and catering industry.
 
The event, supported by ex-student and Michelin-starred chef Andre Garrett, was held in honour of hospitality and catering lecturer Kean Maslen who has worked at the college for 31 years.
 
Kean, known as Mas, knew about the event and was ready to help in the kitchen when he was asked to sit down and eat instead.

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Andre, executive head chef at Cliveden House, gave up his time to support the event alongside Jon Howe, this year’s winner of AA Restaurant of the Year for England.
 
The team preparing the dinner included Garry Rosser, from the Scallop Shell, Stuart Ash, from Woods Restaurant, Claire Wilkins, from The Olive Tree, and Micail Swindells.
 
Micail, who has worked for Heston Blumenthal at The Fat Duck and TV MasterChef judge John Torode, now works as head chef on a private yacht.
 
This change of plan came as a complete surprise for Kean, who is retiring next month.
 
The six chefs worked with current hospitality and catering students at Bath College to create an impressive menu for 70 guests, including Kean’s family and friends.
 
Kean said: “Being able to teach some truly amazing, ambitious and motivated students has blessed me with a mountain of pride and job satisfaction.
 
“I have been totally overwhelmed by the commitment the students, staff and professional chefs, put into making the dinner such a success.
 
“This has been a true showcase for the catering industry.”
 
For the main course, guests enjoyed hay smoked haunch of fallow deer, with salt baked beetroot, parsnip, braised cabbage and a sauce grand veneur (huntsman’s sauce).

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Staff chose to fundraise for the Wessex Multiple Sclerosis Therapy Centre, which provides support for Kean’s daughter, and collected over £700.
 
Guests also listened to a good luck video from Sam Moody, who recently left The Bath Priory to work as head chef at Ballyfin in Ireland.
 
Bridget Halford, Head of Hospitality and Catering, said: “It was fantastic to see our students working alongside these professionals who have gone on to do exceptional things in the industry.
 
“They rose to the challenge and we’re very proud of them. I’d like to say a big thank you to the team for their support. We had the chefs in the day before and I thought ‘they will never keep it quiet’, but it was a complete surprise.
 
“Mas sees the best in all the students. He puts everyone’s happiness first and will do anything for anybody. Sam Moody often called him ‘the legend’ and he’s right about that.
 
“He’s always the first person to offer his help. If you’ve got an event he will say ‘yes ok, I can help with that’. He’s going to be missed by students and staff.”
 

News

Students put through their paces by Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers

 

Officers from the Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers (REME) visited Bath College to put students through their paces with command tasks designed to encourage teamwork and leadership skills.
 

Students studying motor vehicle maintenance and performing engineering operations took part in a day’s worth of activities at Bath College’s Somer Valley Campus based outside and in the classroom.
 

They were split into different groups and had to work together on a range of scenarios, including getting each member of the team across an invisible river without touching the floor.
 

Teams were given five minutes to plan and were timed as they made their way across the invisible river using planks, tyres, rope and an ammunition box. At the end they listened to comments and feedback.
 

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Glyn Mountjoy, Automotive and Engineering Learning Coordinator, said: “We’ve put them in mixed class groups, they’re not in the same class group, so that they’re working with students they haven’t worked with before.
 

“It’s developing their team working skills, developing thinking skills and getting their minds to focus on something that’s completely different to normal college life. It’s improving their processing skills.
 

“We say to them about having a positive mental attitude, that everyone working together achieves more, and that message is coming out today. We want them to be able to go into the workplace and have that team ethos.”
 

Sergeant Scott McNamee, from 130 Field Company, said: “At REME we inspect, repair, modify and maintain all army equipment from tanks and helicopters to small rifles and pistols.
 

“Today we have a mixture of regular army staff and part-time reservists leading the command tasks. It’s good personal development for the students and we look for young apprentices, people who want a job in the engineering sector.
 

“We’re challenging them with leaderless tasks to try and find out who the standout leaders are among the group.”
 

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Students studying motor vehicle maintenance, engineering, stonemasonry, carpentry, plumbing, refrigeration and electrical engineering have all been taking part in employability week at Bath College.
 

During the week, level 1 students studying motor vehicle maintenance and performing engineering operations met Barry Russell from Bath Audi who spoke to them about what he expects from his apprentices, why maths and English is important and CV writing skills.
 

Students received a professional card from Halfords, giving them 50 per cent off tools, and met Dan Church – a former Bath College student who is working as an apprentice with Bath Audi.
 

Motor vehicle student Josh Morris said: “I’m glad they’ve organised this week. I wasn’t sure what the command tasks would be like to start with, but I’m enjoying the tasks. It’s a good feeling when we manage to finish as a team.”

News

Student success celebrated at special awards ceremony

 

High achieving students at Bath College enjoyed their moment in the spotlight during a special awards ceremony held to celebrate each individual’s commitment and hard work.
 
Over 40 students and their families were invited to the annual Celebrating Success Awards Ceremony at the Guildhall after being nominated for awards by their tutors.
 
Students studying floristry, music and catering and hospitality gave up their time to make the event memorable with colourful table displays, canapés and entertainment.
 
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The ceremony included students from every department and Oscar Marcus, Complementary Therapies Student of the Year, was one of the first students to collect his award.
 
Oscar achieved over 50 hours of volunteering alongside studying at Bath College and now works at the 5-star Gainsborough Bath Spa Hotel as a massage therapist.
 
The 20-year-old said: “My new job is going really well and I’m learning a lot. It was a complete surprise, but I’m really honoured to be here and to be recommended for this award.
 
“Being at college, it’s like a big family from the start, we all learned together. Some of us didn’t have any massage experience and now we’re going into work as professionals.”
 
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Oscar with lecturer Diana Rowe
 
Staff chose Karla Cabot as the Access to Higher Education Student of the Year after she successfully gained a place to study veterinary medicine at the University of Bristol.
 
Seventy-three students have just started at university after finishing the access programme, which provides students with a nationally recognised qualification allowing them to progress to degree level.
 
Course leader Carolyn Guy enjoyed catching up with Karla at the ceremony and also stepped onto the stage after being chosen for the B&NES Chairman’s Award for Inspirational Teaching.
 
She said: “Karla showed a quiet determination throughout the course. She took every opportunity to gain a huge breadth of work experience in different specialities.
 
“Veterinary medicine is a highly competitive degree and is offered by only seven universities in the UK. This not only a first for the access course at Bath College, but also a very rare achievement for an access student.”
 
Members of the Step Up Group won the Student Service in the Community award, sponsored by The Rotary Club of Bath, for their work volunteering with the Kennet and Avon Canal Trust.
 
The students, who are studying for a Step-Up Diploma, adopted a section of the canal to maintain, working to clear hedgerows and cut back overhanging trees.
 
The ceremony also recognised the contribution local businesses make to student development, naming ESPA UK, Imperial Cleaning Services, and Hudson Stonemasonry as employers of the year.
 
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Jordan Adams: Media Student of the Year
 
Managing director Simson Hudson sent his apprentice Alec Curtis to study at Bath College and was named as the Building Services, Construction and Engineering Employer of the Year.
 
He said: “I’m completely humbled to be chosen for an award. It was very fortunate that Alec’s assessor visited us on quite a few occasions and was impressed with the work we were doing.
 
“I’m very happy with what he’s done and what he’s learned at the college, with the workshop and the facilities. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Bath College as a training provider.”
 
Bath College Principal and Chief Executive Laurel Penrose said: “On occasions like tonight it’s really the best part of my job.
 
“Although tonight’s celebration might seem like a good conclusion for all the hard work that has taken place, in many ways it’s just the start.
 
“The college is delighted to be part of each student’s life journey. Part of our role as a college is about preparing students for the world of work. As a college, we want to make sure every one of our students achieve and are highly employable.
 
“Qualifications are important, but our tutors go beyond this remit by fostering opportunities for students in the workplace. All these relationships benefit our learners and ensure they have the best opportunity to fulfil their potential.”

News

Students at Bath College to open new crèche and gym facilities

 

Students at Bath College are opening a new crèche and gym facilities offering parents affordable childcare and the opportunity to develop their health and fitness.
 
Organised by level 2 childcare and sport students, the new project will allow parents to drop off their children at the crèche and visit the college gym, which is open to the public for the first time.
 
Students on Bath College’s level 2 fitness study programme will be on hand to offer training advice during gym sessions from November 7 on Monday and Wednesday mornings.
 
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Kate Hobbs, Interim Head of Department for Sport, Leisure and Care, said: “At Bath College, we place a strong emphasis on employability skills.
 
“Many of our students work in the community undertaking valuable work experience placements at local schools and nurseries.
 
“The gym and the crèche will provide students with another opportunity to experience a real working environment, supporting many aspects of their programme of study.
 
“Students working in both areas will develop their skills under supervision from their tutors and with the support of our second year childcare students.
 
“They will be working with people on a regular basis, as well as providing a service, giving them the opportunity to become more employable and experts in their own sector.”
 
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Childcare students at the crèche are planning an exciting range of activities, including arts and crafts, messy play, sensory exploration and story times.
 
As part of the launch, the crèche and the gym are free for parents until the end of December, when affordable prices will be introduced.
 
Lecturer in early years Abigail Holt said: “The team have been working hard over the summer to transform the crèche. We have been painting and sourcing resources to make the space stimulating and enjoyable for the children.
 
“The room is bright and spacious, and we’re looking forward to seeing it in action. I’m looking forward to seeing the students develop into skilled practitioners using their classroom knowledge in practice.”
 
The crèche and gym, at Bath College’s city centre campus, will be open on Mondays and Wednesdays from 9am to 11am. This is available on an advance booking basis and is subject to availability.
 
There will be up to 13 level 2 childcare students managing each session, with space available for 12 children (from six weeks to five-year-olds).
 
To book call (01225) 328649 or email gymandcreche@bathcollege.ac.uk
 

News

Award-winning chefs return to head up autumn gourmet dinner

Picture: Catering students Callum, George, Marta and Kit with Ryan Hanson and Kean Maslan
 

Students at Bath College are preparing for the return of two award-winning chefs who are heading up a special six-course gourmet dinner with an autumn theme.
 
Michelin-starred chef Andre Garrett started his career at Bath College and is executive head chef at Cliveden House, a 5-star country house hotel in Berkshire.
 
Jon Howe, chef proprietor for the Lumière Restaurant in Cheltenham, is also a former student at the college and is still celebrating after winning AA Restaurant of the Year for England this month.
 
Both chefs are returning to their old college on October 20 to work alongside current students and make the evening at Bath College’s Shrubbery Restaurant a big success.
 
Mr Garrett, who was born in Bath, said: “I’m really looking forward to coming back to the college and cooking with the students.
 
“It has been 23 years since I left college and I would like to make it a special event for them. I am bringing some great produce, including wild locally shot venison.
 
“I’m hoping that we can give the students a taste of the great trade they have in front of them and encourage them to go forward.”
 
The evening starts at 6.30pm with a welcome drink and canapés. Tickets are £49 per person and include a small wine flight. Managers from the Pig Hotel will help supervise the service.
 
Former students Gary Rosser, from the Scallop Shell, Stuart Ash, from Woods Restaurant and Claire Wilkins, from The Olive Tree are also offering their support on the night.
 
Lecturer Ryan Hanson, from Bath College, said: “Catering at Bath College is all about developing talent for a competitive, creative and ever expanding industry.
 
“This evening will showcase three decades of talent that has come through our doors and progressed on to some of the finest eateries in the country.
 
“To have these chefs back gives the department an enormous sense of pride and will prove a great inspiration for our current students, who we hope will also progress onto bigger and better things.”
 
Mr Howe, from the Lumière Restaurant, said: “This is a wonderful opportunity to work with, and hopefully inspire, the next generation of young, up-coming chefs.
 
“Bath College has played such a pivotal role in my career, so it will be lovely to give a little back.”
 
To book tickets e-mail Ryan.Hanson@bathcollege.ac.uk

News

Music student picked to play at the Royal Albert Hall in London

 

A student at Bath College has been offered the chance to perform at one of London’s best classical music venues just weeks into his new course.
 
Multi-instrumentalist Kenan Broadway has been picked to play at this year’s Music for Youth Proms at the world-famous Royal Albert Hall.
 
The Bath College music student will be part of a mass ensemble bringing together members of Gloucestershire Music, Bath & North East Somerset Music Hub and South Gloucestershire Music Hub.
 
Musicians across the three counties are joining together to celebrate the life of William Shakespeare on the 400th anniversary of his death with a new piece of music from conductor and composer Philip Harper.
 
It will be Kenan’s first visit to the Royal Albert Hall and he will play the double bass or the bassoon as part of a 140-piece wind band backed by an impressive choir of 450 singers.
 
Kenan, 16, started playing the piano at the age of 11 and also plays the cello, double bass, viola, violin, guitar and bassoon.
 
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He said: “I love solo pieces. I started on the piano and then I heard the Bach Cello Suites and thought ‘I want to be able to do that’. Over time I have started collecting all the instruments I can.
 
“I’m feeling very excited and lucky to be playing at the Royal Albert Hall. Ten people could show up and I’d still be happy because it’s such an amazing venue – it’s going to sound brilliant with the acoustics in there.
 
“It’s likely that there’ll be a double bass part and if not, I’ll be playing the bassoon. I started playing the double bass in January and got myself up to scratch very quickly because I’ve learnt the cello before.
 
“It’s going to be nerve-wracking, but to say I’ve performed at the Royal Albert hall, that’s a great thing for university. It’s my dream to go to music college.”
 
Kenan, from Midsomer Norton, was at secondary school when he heard one of his teachers playing the album I Giorni, by the Italian pianist Ludovico Einaudi, and was inspired to start playing the piano.
 
He will be playing at the Royal Albert Hall on Monday November 14.
 
Kenan said: “I love it at Bath College, it’s so different to school. I love the people and the course and what it’s teaching me. It’s great being surrounded by like-minded people and people you can connect with.
 
“I went straight to college from GCSEs. I did have the option to do sixth form, but I knew what I wanted to do already. I have two years in college and the next five to six years of my life will be in music education – I’ve never been happier.”
 
To book tickets for the concert at the Royal Albert Hall click here.
 

News

Hospitality students to serve guests at the launch of the Bath Soup Project

 

If you live in Bath & North East Somerset and you have an idea to improve your local community you can sign up to be part of a new crowd-funding event called the Bath Soup Project.
 
Charities, community organisations and Bath & North East Somerset residents have until next week (October 14) to apply to be part of the launch of the Bath Soup Project on November 3.
 
The first event takes place at the Shrubbery Restaurant, Bath College.
 
How it works:
-Everyone in attendance pays a minimum of £5 and the purpose of the evening is to watch five people pitch an idea to improve their local community.
 
-Once the ideas have been pitched, everyone gets a bowl of soup courtesy of Bath College, plus a chance to chat and mull over the pitch they want to vote for. When the votes have been counted, the project with the most votes receives all the cash raised on the night to start their project.
 
-The event aims to bring together people who share a desire for a better community. The added advantage is they also get to meet people and share ideas and resources. New connections are made and it brings the community closer together.
 
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Julie Poll, Business Connector for B&NES, is working on the project with Lucy Beattie, from Bath College, Mike Plows, from the B&NES Volunteer Centre, and volunteer Simon Brand.
 
The group are looking for support from local people and businesses to attend on the evening and be part of making a positive difference to the community.
 
They would also love to hear from anyone who is able to donate additional resources or services to ensure future sustainability of the project.
 
Doors open at the college at 6pm and the presentations will start at 6.30pm.
 
Hospitality and catering students from Bath College will serve bread and soup to people in the college’s Shrubbery Restaurant at 7.30pm.
 
Julie Poll, Business Connector for B&NES, said: “Bath Soup Project is an opportunity to develop partnerships for local communities and businesses, and fully demonstrate the themes I focus on in my role: education, employability, enterprise and community.
 
“More importantly, this is an opportunity to bring together people in B&NES who share a desire for a better community. It’s exciting to bring this project, originating from Detroit, to B&NES and will be even more exciting to hear new ideas benefitting the local community.
 
“I am most grateful to Bath College, Mailboxes Etc, Morgan Brinkhurst Consultancy, The Thoughtful Bread Company, The Business Exchange and MP Ben Howlett for their support.
 
“Thanks should also go to my colleagues Lucy, Mike and Simon for their on-going commitment, enthusiasm and determination to ensure the future success of the project.”
 
The deadline to apply to pitch at the event is October 14. To apply click here.
 
To attend the event register via Eventbrite.

News

Apprentice of the month: Brett Burnell from St Fagans National History Museum

 

Brett Burnell is a stonemasonry apprentice studying at Bath College and working at St Fagans in Wales – an open-air museum in Cardiff celebrating Welsh history and culture.
 
Bath College is one of the few colleges offering a qualification in stonemasonry and the course attracts apprentices from Wales and the South West.

 
What made you decide to sign up as an apprentice?
I spotted the advert for an apprenticeship while scanning through jobs on the internet. I have wanted to become a stonemason for many years, and worked at St Fagans as a labourer, but never had the opportunity until now.
 
What do you do in a normal week as an apprentice?
Three days a week I’m working onsite at the museum on a variety of projects. This includes building rubble lime walling, recreating a Celtic village, and carving and fixing stonework. I’ve worked on many listed buildings.
Two days a week, I attend Bath College where I improve my banker (construction) skills and precision while learning the theory behind stonemasonry.
 
What responsibilities do you have at St Fagan’s?
I work with a team, including one other apprentice stonemason and three masons who have been in the trade all their life and help and guide us.
The other apprentice is on the same course and level as me, which helps as we’re both experiencing the same thing and can work together. My responsibilities are to work safely as part of the team onsite to perform to Bath College’s high standards.
 
What’s the best thing about being an apprentice?
As a 37-year-old man with family and bills to pay, going back to college seemed almost impossible. The apprenticeship gave me the opportunity to keep earning and gain the qualifications I need to further my career and better myself. I would say go for it, it’s hard work but it’s worth it.
 
Has being an apprentice changed life for the better?
Definitely. I have gained more knowledge in the past two years on this course at Bath College than I have working onsite as a labourer for ten years. It gives me a massive sense of pride being able to see what I’m capable of achieving.
 
What’s your plan for the future?
I hope to complete my Level 3 NVQ and diploma in stonemasonry. When I’m qualified I’d like to stay working at St Fagans. It’s a beautiful place to work and I like knowing that what I’ve produced will be there long after I am.
 


 

Interested in an apprenticeship? Let us know!

 

 


 

What are the next steps to becoming an apprentice?

 

Our programmes are designed for young people who have either found an employer who will take on an apprentice, or for those looking to find an employer.
Please complete the form below giving details of the apprenticeship you want to take and the employer who has offered you a placement.

 

 

Register your interest in becoming an Apprentice using the form above.
 
 

College Placement Officer contacts you to discuss the next steps.
 
 

Interviews, start dates and enrollments are arranged for you.
 
 

You begin paid employment through the programme.
 

 

News

Students network at the launch of the Bath College Academy of Business

 

Students had the chance to network with top employers at the launch of the Bath College Academy of Business.

 

The academy is a new venture set up to get students ready for working in business by giving them access to industry experts.

 

A number of companies have already signed up to offer work placements, company visits, student mentoring and business talks.
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The launch event, held in the Futures Hub at Bath College, was a chance for employers to meet students studying business first-hand.

 

Jon Domaille, Head of Department for Business, Media, Music and Performing Arts, said: “The evening was a massive success and we are delighted with the support and interest that we have received from local organisations.

 

“It was so exciting to see our students already mixing so confidently with employers at the launch event.

 

“The students are certainly excited about the opportunities that the academy will present them with and they were inspired by the evening.

 

“The event was exactly what we want the academy to be about – employers and students communicating and working together.”

 

Students are already working with Bath-based predictive people analytics software company Cognisess.

 

The company, whose software provides analytics for recruiters and companies, will be measuring students’ personal development throughout their time at college.

 

CEO and founder Chris Butt said: “Job retention is a big issue for both employers and job seekers alike. The cost of not finding the right job or career is significant for all parties.

 

“The primary aim of the college is to develop the talents of its students in order to help them achieve successful and fulfilling careers.

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“To fulfil this vision, Bath College is developing deeper and more strategic links with over 30 local partners who are all essential to ensuring students have the best chance of finding the right path into employment.

 

“As a strategic partner, and using our Cognisess Deep Learn software, we will work with students to raise self-awareness and improve employability skills by providing sophisticated career and job matching tools.”

 

Professor Georgina Andrews, Head of the Bath Business School at Bath Spa University, attended the launch evening and also spoke to business students volunteering at the event.

 

She said: “I think it’s a great idea benefitting both groups of students. Students at Bath College will learn from our university students, and they will benefit from sharing their skills and experience.

 

“Bath Spa University is already a partner with the college, so this is a good way we can extend that link.”

 

To offer your support with the Bath College Academy of Business e-mail Lucy.Beattie@bathcollege.ac.uk.

 

News

Bath College chaplain Rob Popejoy to appear on Songs of Praise

 

To watch Rob on Songs of Praise (on BBC iPlayer) click here.
 
Famous for his religious tattoos, Bath College chaplain Rob Popejoy has caught the eye of the Songs of Praise production team and is due to feature on the BBC One television programme on Sunday.
 
Chaplain Rob is part of the student participation team at Bath College and works to give students pastoral support through one to one mentoring sessions, as well as larger lessons and tutorials.
 
He has tattoos covering most of his body, including a picture of Jesus on his chest, and made the headlines back in 2014 when he was photographed bare-chested for a student project.
 
Called the ‘holy hipster’ and a ‘tattoo-loving vicar’, Rob was filmed by the Songs of Praise team last week for a short feature in which he talks about his tattoos and shares how he became a Christian.
 
Rob said: “My testimony came out, I talked about that and there was a lot of discussion about the church and how it’s represented in the secular world. One of the things I was asked is ‘are you trying to make God cool?’
 
“My tattoos are part of my personality. I’ve been getting tattoos ever since I had an active faith. Generally I have stuff that points towards a benchmark in my life, like being baptised and the year I came back to church.
 
“For my first tattoo I chose the words ‘for glory’ on my left arm. That was me stating what my life should be and what God wants me to be about.
 
“I didn’t choose to get tattooed to make myself cooler as a chaplain and I don’t do it to be a Christian witness to people, but it does happen to be a good by product of this – it’s a good conversation starter.”
 
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Rob, who leads the Remembrance Day service and the Christmas carol concert at Bath College, also works as a youth pastor at St Michael’s in Twerton.
 
He had his tattoos filmed by the Songs of Praise team and was also filmed leading a tutorial for Bath College media students.
 
Rob said: “I think there should be a chaplain in every educational establishment. Even if you take religion out of it, I think there’s a need to provide pastoral support.
 
“I offer pastoral support to students and staff, mainly students, and promote awareness of other faiths to encourage an active dialogue around religion and faith – to challenge people into a deeper thought process.
 
“I’m both nervous and excited to see how I’m portrayed as a chaplain on Songs of Praise. In the Christian church world there are so many denominations, but you’ll find that we’re all believers.
 
“Yes, the crew came to film me, but if you go to another ‘young’ church, for example in London, there are other people like me with beards and tattoos. The difference is that they don’t have a job that gives them the same profile.”
 

News

Life at Bath College: Music student and SU team member Katie

 

If you’re in the last year of your GCSEs you’ll be thinking about where to study next. Perhaps you’ve picked up a prospectus for Bath College, browsed our website online or added the date of our next open day to your calendar. All of this will give you a good idea of what it’s like to study at Bath College, but what do our students think?
 
Over the course of the year, we’ll be interviewing current students about their time at Bath College and finding out what student life is like. Our first interview is with Katie, a Level 3 student studying music performance. Katie has just returned to college as a second year student and is volunteering as equality and diversity officer as part of the Students’ Union team.

 
Do you remember coming into college as a first year – what was it like?

It was quite daunting, mainly because a lot of people on my course knew each other. A big group of them came from the same secondary school. I thought it was going to be quite hard to make friends but it was a lot easier than in secondary school.
 
I did a year of A-levels and I didn’t get on with it at all. It’s hard to motivate yourself if you don’t enjoy what you do. I found this course at Bath College and it suited me better.
 
It’s a lot better at college because you’re treated your age. Unless you misbehave, you’re going to get treated as an adult. Your tutor will help you if you’re struggling, but you have to ask for help – which makes you a lot more independent. After a while you start to learn quicker because you’re learning independently.
 
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What’s the best thing about returning to college – what are you looking forward to this year?

I worked a lot in the summer, so I was looking forward to coming back to college and getting on with things. It’s been good to catch up with friends.
 
I’m looking forward to my Final Major Project. You can do whatever you like, as long as it’s a large project. Most people do an EP launch but I’m going to try and do a big student party. Kez (Students’ Union President) wanted to do an SU party and a lot of people will use it to launch their EPs.
 
This year, we’re doing a lot of community work. After my course finishes, I’d like to study music therapy. It’s good to get things to put on your CV to show what you’re interested in.
 
What have you started to do in class?

We’re doing music and film, which takes a lot of patience. We’ve been given a silent film clip and we have to put sound effects in. Getting it perfect is painstaking. The aim at the end is to have a 30 second film clip with sound and we have to compose our own music.
 
We’re also doing song writing lessons once a week. We get given a different genre to explore. The first one is hip-hop! It’s going to be a challenge, especially because we have to record it ourselves, but I’m sure we’ll have a lot of fun when we get in to it. It’s good because it widens your appreciation for music.
 
Can you tell me about being part of the SU – what are you planning for this year?

My position is equality and diversity officer. My job is to make sure everything is available to everyone and to be a point of contact for people. I’ll be doing quite a bit round anti-bullying week and mental health awareness week.
 
I’m hoping to set up a peer support group, but it might take a bit of time because there isn’t one at the moment. Having something run by students might make people more comfortable talking about issues. At my secondary school we didn’t have anything like that and I would have benefitted from it.
 
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What was the freshers’ fair like?

Freshers’ fair was a success compared to last year. It was busier than last year and we have a few more people signed up who are looking to join the SU. Hopefully another girl will be interested because Kez and I are a bit outnumbered in the office – we need a bit more girl power!
 
At first it was quite hard to coax people in to talk to you. But once you got a group talking to you, other people saw it was ok. Hopefully the NUS card numbers will go up as well. There are really good places like Apple who will take the discounts. And it’s really cheap – it’s £12 for the year. You don’t realise how much you can save until you have it.
 
Do you have any tips for new students?

Just to do as much as possible. If someone asks you to do something say ‘yes’ because a lot of things only come up once a year and in the 2nd year you’ll be a lot busier.
 
Don’t be afraid to talk to people you don’t know. Getting involved in things that aren’t course related is really good fun. We have an Airhop trip coming up in October and there will be more trips like that throughout the year. I can’t wait – the foam pits should be interesting!
 

News

Students’ Union President Kez attends launch of new teenage chill out room

 

Local charity Time is Precious invited fundraisers to the launch of a new sensory room and teenage chill out room at Bath RUH on Friday.
 
Students’ Union President Kez Hawkins received an invite to the launch, as a thank you to students at Bath College who have been fundraising for the charity.
 
Kez was part of a team of fundraisers who collected sponsorship by abseiling down the side of Bath College’s Macaulay building in July.

 

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Students chose Time is Precious as their charity of the year and worked hard to fundraise, collecting over £2,000 for the teenage chill out room.
 
The room will give teenagers in hospital a space of their own, complete with £4,000 worth of IT equipment, TV monitors and wifi.
 
Time is Precious has also bought an Xbox and PlayStation to take into hospital wards, to be used by teenagers recovering in their beds.
 
The charity was set up by Nicky and Neil Halford in memory of their son Ben to help families facing long stays in hospital with terminally ill children.
 
As part of this, Time is Precious has opened a sensory room with lights, sounds and games for younger children at Bath RUH.
 
Nicky said: “It will make a big difference for families. From my point of view, being in hospital myself, I know how stressful and hard it is. We don’t get paid for the charity work we do, we just like to see the money being used and to be helpful.
 
“We never expected to fund big projects like the sensory room and the chill out room when we set up five years ago in memory of our son Ben. To see the charity grow has been amazing. Thank you for all your help and support.”
 
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Kez with charity patron Will Thorp
 
As well as the charity abseil, students fundraised for Time is Precious through bucket collections, cake sales and a lunchtime ‘Gunk the SU’ event.
 
Kez said: “It was really nice to see the end product after fundraising for Time is Precious. All the time and effort students have put in, we have seen that it’s going to make a difference – it’s such a great space.
 
“The reason we chose to fundraise for Time is Precious and the chill out room is because we represent the college and students. At any point a student could end up in hospital (or someone close to them). If this happens, the chill out room could help them through a difficult time.”
 

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