Preparing to succeed: Eleven tips for the night before and the day of your exam


You’ve spent months studying for your exam and now it’s the day before. Now is the time to show what you’ve learned, so keep focused and read our tips to help you do your best. Good luck to everyone sitting exams this year – we hope it goes well. 
1. Check the venue and time of the exam the day before to make sure that you have not confused the day/time/venue.
2. Get a good night’s sleep. Feeling refreshed and awake will help you more than a last minute, all night revision cramming session

3. Have a balanced breakfast and eat nothing risky (probably not the best day to have a super-hot curry!)
4. Before leaving home, check that you have everything that you will need – ID, stationery, calculator, etc.
5. Head to the exam with plenty of time. A lot of unexpected events can happen on your way there and you do not want to be late!
6. Read all the instructions and questions carefully at least twice before starting and plan how much time to allocate to each.

7. Start answering the questions that you feel most confident about. There is no need to answer the questions in order.
8. Don’t spend more time than you planned on a particular section/question or you might run out of time to answer other questions and gain those extra marks
9. Use every minute of the exam and if you have time left, review your answers before handing back the paper.
10. Stay calm and think positive, you have done your revision and have nothing to fear!
11. Reward yourself. If you have more exams to complete, spend some time relaxing before you hit the revision books again.



James McMurtrie’s parlour: Carpentry students build new display at Radstock Museum


Carpentry students from Bath College have built a new display at Radstock Museum to help tell the story of mining engineer James McMurtrie.
James McMurtrie has a historic connection with Bath College, as he lived at South Hill House, built on the grounds of the college’s Somer Valley Campus.
Students William Minty, Tyler Bryant, Daniel White and Samuel Watts have been volunteering at the museum to help staff create the new display, called James McMurtrie’s parlour.
Painting and decorating students will put the finishing touches to the parlour walls, and level 1 carpentry and joinery students have built five plinths for the museum to use for displays.
Who was James McMurtrie?

Born in Ayrshire in 1840, James McMurtrie moved to Somerset to become the manager at Newbury Colliery in Coleford. He made many improvements and, as a result, was hired by Countess Waldegrave as Under Manager at Middle Pit in Radstock.


Countess Waldegrave inherited estates in Somerset, Essex and London after the death of her second husband (the 7th Earl Waldegrave) in 1846, and owned all the mines in Radstock at this time.
She paid for South Hill House as a thank you for James McMurtrie’s hard work. This was demolished in the 1950s and Radstock Technical College was built, which merged with Bath College in April 2015.
Carpentry lecturer Adrian Drake said: “It was good for the students to participate in a volunteering project that helps to develop their employability skills.
“It was quite a technical job, because the museum has a sloping roof. They also had to negotiate with the museum, to let them know when they were coming and how noisy the work would be.”


Deliver quality apprenticeships: Eight things you need to cover as an employer taking on an apprentice


The government is changing the way apprenticeships are funded and delivered, and employers are facing new costs now that the apprenticeship levy has come into force. If you’re taking on a new apprentice, you’ll need to follow the government’s funding and performance management rules. To help you stay up to date, we’ve put together a quick guide with some important tips.

1. You need a specific contract of employment
This contract should be different to a standard contract and mention the type of apprenticeship offered, including start and end dates.

2. Apprentices must be employed until they finish their course
Apprenticeship contracts have a time limit, but sometimes apprentices are unable to complete their studies within this time. Employers should continue to support their apprentice until they complete their training.

3. Apprenticeships need a job role to move into
Apprentices are a valuable asset for companies for many years to come. However, if you’re not able to provide a permanent job role, you should help your apprentice with their search for alternative employment.

4. Allow 20 per cent of working time for training
Apprentices need 20 per cent of their working time away from their desk to learn and train on the job. This can include attending college, attending in-work training and study time.

5. Give an opportunity for English and maths qualifications
Apprentices should have the opportunity to study for GCSE maths and English qualifications if they haven’t achieved a C grade.

6. Employers choose the end point assessment
You have the final say on the assessments your apprentice needs to pass in order to achieve their qualification. This can be developed in connection with your chosen training provider.

7. You can train existing employees as apprentices
If you currently run training programmes for your staff, you could convert these into apprenticeship programmes in order to use part of your apprenticeship levy.

8. Employers need to sign a contract with their training provider
You can choose your training provider, but you’ll need to sign a contract with them. For apprentices aged 15 to 17, you’ll also need a signature from their parent or guardian.

Bath College is a registered training provider and our apprenticeship team is available to offer expert advice.

At Bath College, we work with businesses to help them develop apprenticeship programmes in line with their training needs. Our priority is to help your company grow and make sure you maximise the return on your investment.

To find out more about how our team could help your business visit www.bathcollege.ac.uk or e-mail apprenticeships@bathcollege.ac.uk


New exhibition: Snap and Stroll photographers capture Radstock scenery


The chance to learn photography has led to new friendships for students taking part in the Snap and Stroll project in Radstock.

Participants have spent eight weeks exploring the town, taking photographs and meeting people who share the same interests. Their work will go on show at the Swallow Community Café, at St Nicholas Church Centre, Church Street, on Tuesday April 11.

Picture by Peter

Led by Sally Collister, from In the Picture Participatory Photography, the course is organised by the Adult Community Learning team at Bath College.

The project follows on from a successful pilot project in Bath last year and another exhibition on show at the Civic Centre, Keynsham, until April 8.

It is a collaboration between Bath College, Creativity Works and the Wellbeing College, and includes those who are experiencing or in recovery from anxiety, depression and mental health challenges.

Picture by Irene

Kathleen Maitland, from Radstock, has been taking part in the project. She said: “I enjoyed the course from day one. Sally has been amazing, she’s very patient and has gone into as much depth allowed within the time.

“When I’m out walking I view things so differently. It’s made me more aware of my surroundings. We get along well as a group, there’s a lot of laughter and encouragement – it’s important to encourage each other.

“I’m going through a difficult period in life, and this course has helped me to meet people so I don’t feel isolated. When you’re taking photographs, you get out and about and you see life going on.”

Katie Constantine, from Bath College, is helping curate the exhibition, which will feature some well-known scenes, as well as fresh perspectives on everyday places.

Picture by Kazvan 

Sally, who set up In the Picture Participatory Photography in 2015, said: “I have been delighted and very impressed by how far the participants have come with their photography. We’ve put together a cracking exhibition. I’ve had so much fun facilitating these sessions and will miss my weekly visits to Radstock.”

The exhibition opens with a reception on Tuesday April 11th from 4.30pm to 5.30pm. It will be open at the Swallow Community Café until April 28th (between 11am to 3pm).


College competition: Students show they have plenty of creativity


Students studying media makeup, beauty, spa therapy, hairdressing and barbering took part in a day of internal college competitions. They created some brilliant designs and worked very hard – well done to everyone involved. See below for the full list of winners. 

Winners for media makeup

Level 2: Avant-garde

First: Yasmin Hi
Second: Jodi Lord
Third: Megan Douglas

Level 3: Woodland characters

First: Meg Cottle
Highly commended: Emily Wallace
Best mood board: Freya Harmer

Thank you to the judges: Issy Carmody (former student) Gemma Avent (makeup artist) Melanie Crump (Principle of the Bath Academy of Media Makeup) and Jessica Page (from Charlton House).


Winners for beauty

Manicure winner: Megan Palmer
Make up winner: Bethany Thompson
Overall beauty winner: Bethany Thompson

Bethany won a spa day for two donated by Center Parcs. Thank you to judges Kayde English (Spa manager at Center Parcs) and Emily Desborough (Emily is a former Bath College student working at Center Parcs).

Winners for spa therapy

Well done to the winners: Jade Glover, Carly Harris and Dorota Popowska (who also won the overall achievement award and a trophy donated by the Bath Thermae Spa). Thank you to the Bath Thermae Spa, the Royal Crescent, Lush, and Lucknam Park for helping with the judging and/or donating prizes.


Winners for hairdressing

Class one: Fairy tale
First: Abi Fry
Second: Sophie Coupe
Third: Georgia Puckett

Class two: Commercial barbers cut
First: Sam Lloyd
Second: Billy Lewis

Class three: Ladies commercial cut
First: Chloe Newton

Class four: Prom culture/prom
First: Katie Nelmes
Second: Bonita Kitchen
Third: Maisey Sprake


Class 4a: Pop culture/prom
First: Tiegan Marsh
Second: Maria Vaughan
Third: Megan Parson Box

Class five: Avant-garde/Disney

First: Aisha Wright
Second: Sophie Thomas
Third: Cerys Mears

Class six: Avant-garde/Disney

First: Chloe Jones
Second: Hannah Yeatman
Third: Danielle Dayman-Johns

Class seven: Photoshoot (Level 3)

First: Danielle Dayman-Johns
Second: Aisha Wright

Class eight: Photoshoot (barbering)
First: John Adams
Second: Ricmark Dela Isla


Chefs’ Forum: Students work with Soyful Alom at The Mint Room


Pictures by Faydit Food Photography 
Executive chef Soyful Alom gave students at Bath College a lesson in Indian cuisine at the latest Chefs’ Forum event.
The Mint Room in Bath has become a popular foodie destination, offering a culinary tour of India without the need for a visa. Soyful has developed his menu with Michelin-starred chef Hrishkesh Desai and was keen to speak to the students about his food.
Students helped Soyful prepare and serve colourful Indian canapés for 70 industry professionals at lunchtime.

He said: “I didn’t realise that the students would be so fascinated by Indian cuisine. I was very impressed with their existing knowledge of flavours and spice combinations, their enthusiasm and willingness to learn was really pleasing.”
Bridget Halford, Head of Hospitality at Bath College, said: “It has been really inspiration for our students to work with a group of professional Asian chefs, for many it is their first attempt at cooking authentic, fine dining Indian cuisine and experimenting with such intense and rich flavour.”
Students from Gloucestershire College also attended the event and were part of a samosa making competition, won by 17-year-old Bath College student Kyle Lucas.
He said: “I am really excited to have won a day in the kitchen with Soyful. Having worked as a waiter in a local Indian restaurant, I am no stranger to Indian cuisine.
“However, today’s event has inspired me to experiment further in the kitchen actually cooking Indian food. I am really chuffed to have won the competition today.”

Another highlight of the day was a wine and pairing session, led by Bristol-based Averys wine merchants. Jack Cook, from Walter Rose, butchered a whole lamb – demonstrating how to make use of the whole carcass.
Soyful chose to make Tawa Duck, a roast duck dish with a korma base and Indian spices, for his cookery demonstration. He will be working with students at Bath College’s Shrubbery Restaurant to serve canapés and a two-course meal on April 25th at 12pm.
Tickets are available for the meal, which is open to the public. To book call (01225) 328502 or e-mail shrubberyrestaurant@bathcollege.ac.uk
The Chefs’ Forum holds quarterly events in the Bath and Cotswolds area, and 36 chef events per year nationally. Contact catherine@redcherry.uk.com


Apprentice of the month: Matt Rose from TH White (refrigeration)


Refrigeration apprentice Matt Rose was 18 when he started studying Level 2 refrigeration at Bath College. After working for five years (and training a few apprentices of his own) he returned to college to study for a Level 3 apprenticeship.

You work at TH White, what does your job role include?

At TH White, we do everything from security to construction, but I work in the dairy department. I’m fixing, installing, decommissioning and repairing milking equipment.

I like a challenge. You get a phone call saying ‘I have a break-down,’ but often there’s not a lot of information before you go out on the job. You need to think ‘what do I need to take on this job?’ I’m not stuck in an office, it’s nice to see the countryside – you end up having your lunch break in a different place every day.


How did you start out in the refrigeration industry?

I wanted to do a trade and find a decent job and I thought ‘why not try the foundation course?’ That was at Bath College, and after that I got a Level 2 apprenticeship for myself with TH White.

Even coming back to college now, I’m learning a lot. The Level 3 course is an in-depth course focusing on specific subjects which are relevant to you. It’s valuable coming into the college, at the end of this I will have a Level 3 diploma in air conditioning and refrigeration. It will give me a better foothold and more leverage when it comes to the chance for a promotion and a pay rise.

How do you feel you’ve improved since starting out as an apprentice in the early days of your career?

I’ve had four apprentices since I finished the level 2 course. It was daunting teaching the apprentices to start with but I learned a lot from teaching them. When they ask questions, it makes you think. You don’t realise how much you’ve learned until you have to answer their questions.

What’s the best thing about being in the air conditioning and refrigeration industry?

Air conditioning and refrigeration is everywhere, so there’s a demand for jobs. You can go to any place that has air conditioning and refrigeration and ask them who does their service and maintenance, and then you can ask that company for a job. It’s about using your initiative.

What advice do you have for someone starting out in the trade?

I would say the best thing you can do is find yourself a decent apprenticeship and get yourself enrolled on a course. With the foundation course, you don’t have to have an apprenticeship but you have to get on the course and to be able to pay for it.

What I say to my apprentices is that ‘yes the wage is lower but you don’t have the knowledge yet’. I would highly recommend an apprenticeship. It’s been a good route for me – If I wasn’t doing this I don’t know what I would be doing, but now I have a trade for life.


LILS students organise fashion show to fundraise for Julian House


Students studying Life and Independent Living Skills took to the catwalk to raise money for Julian House with a fabulous fashion show.

The group started work on the event in January, organising the costumes, running order, music, refreshments, invites and programme.

Xavier Theobald, 19, designed the artwork for a series of slides showing during the fashion show, helping to bring the event to life.

LILS students visited Julian House’s charity shop on Walcot Street and borrowed clothes for the show. They also found inspiration for their designs at the Bath Fashion Museum.


They went to the Wiltshire Scrapstore to collect materials and created clothes for a series of mannequins inspired by fashion throughout the ages, including medieval knights, goths, hippies, and Princess Diana’s wedding dress.

All the food for the evening was home-made and students were on-hand to welcome guests and announce the running order.

Students studying hair and beauty helped to get participants ready for the catwalk and stayed to enjoy the show along with parents and friends. The event raised over £60 for Julian House’s work tackling homelessness.


Student Georgia Long said: “It feels really lovely to be dressed up. I’m looking forward to doing the catwalk and my mum and dad are coming to watch.”

Lecturer Suzann Taylor said: “The purpose of our course is for students to develop their independent living and employability skills. Each student has their own personal targets.

“The fashion show gave them the opportunity to work on a variety of important skills, such as budgeting, managing money, written and verbal communication, personal presentation and food hygiene.

“It was also great to see students have the opportunity to work towards their strengths and build their confidence in a variety of different skills.”


Former student aiming to represent UK at global skills competition


Former student Toby Brook is aiming to represent the UK in stonemasonry at WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017.

Toby finished his apprenticeship at Bath College in 2015 and went on to compete as part of a winning UK team at EuroSkills 2016.

Now he’ll be taking part in a four-day selection competition in a bid to win a place in Team UK for the WorldSkills competition.

Toby at EuroSkills 2016

Billed as the toughest skills competition in the world, WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017 will see over 1,000 apprentices and students from 70 countries come together and compete to be the best in the world.

Toby, who works at Wells Cathedral Stonemasons, will compete against other apprentices and students from across the UK from March 29th to April 1st.

He was selected to compete for a place in Team UK after being invited to join the WorldSkills UK International Training and Development Programme, having excelled in the WorldSkills UK competitions.

In 2015, Toby won highly commended in the WorldSkills UK competition.


Dr Neil Bentley, Chief Executive, WorldSkills UK said: “Participation in the international WorldSkills Competition enables the UK to benchmark apprenticeship standards in this country with those around the world. It also provides us with a global platform to promote how skilled we are as a trading nation, helping the UK secure its future global competitiveness

“Representing your country on the world stage is no easy feat. It takes hard work, determination and the highest level of skill. Toby has demonstrated all of these attributes and many more and I wish the competitors the best of luck as they compete for a place in Team UK.

Team UK for WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017 will be announced on April 21st.


Apprenticeships and Jobs fair is a valuable chance to meet employers looking for young talent


Thousands of people looking for new opportunities visited the Bath College Apprenticeships and Jobs Fair.
Over 1,000 college students and school pupils came along with parents and carers to speak to local and national employers on March 22nd.
Employers were available from a wide range of industries, including travel and tourism, hair and beauty, construction, engineering and retail.

The Mayor of Bath at the QinetiQ stand
Staff from the Royal United Hospitals, Bath, and Way Ahead Care, were on hand to represent the health and social care sector at the fair, as well as employees from The Pig near Bath, The Vineyard Hotel, Apex Hotels and Combe Grove Hotel representing the hospitality and catering industry.
Student Ellis Byrne, who is studying engineering at Bath College, said: “The fair was really good. I spoke to five engineering companies to find out what apprentices do and how to continue learning and developing. I’ve had an e-mail from one company who thanked me for going and speaking with them.”

Combe Grove Hotel has just been bought by The Elmhurst Foundation and is being turned into a centre for work-based learning offering apprenticeships in all areas of business, from marketing, administration and finance to hospitality, customer service, estate management and horticulture.
Jenna Morice is already working at the hotel and studying with Bath College as a Level 3 business administration apprentice.
Speaking at the fair, she said: “I’m really happy to be here promoting apprenticeships to people and it’s great to see so many people interested.
“I’ve found it extremely motivating to be learning and working at the same time. You’re working with experienced people, you can go to them and say ‘I don’t know how to do this’ and they will mentor you.”
The Mayor of Bath, Councillor Paul Crossley, attended the fair and spoke to a number of businesses, including Midas Group, Gradwell Communications, Avon & Somerset Police and Space Engineering.

He also met Adam Whittaker, Kieran Gash and Anna Parkinson, who are all apprentices at Rotork, one of Bath’s biggest engineering companies.
Adam, from Bristol, said: “The first time I came across Rotork as a company was here at Bath College’s Apprenticeships and Jobs fair.
“I was volunteering at the fair and studying at Bath College on an engineering course. The apprenticeship route definitely works. It’s a good way of seeing what opportunities are out there locally, and what alternatives there are to university.
“I’m enjoying the range of my apprenticeship, we spend a short period in each department. I’m in the quality assurance department at the moment and I’m going to go to nuclear engineering.
“It helps you to find out what you like doing and the company, they take this into account when you’re looking for a job at the end of your apprenticeship.”

At the Royal United Hospitals Bath stand
Employability adviser Lucy Beattie organised the fair as part of the Bath College Futures Team, which works to provide employability opportunities for young people attending the college and from the local community.
She said: “It was an amazing opportunity for all our students and local school pupils to see the range of employers out there. We know there are people helping on stands this year who met employers at the fair this time last year, and we have had amazing feedback from employers saying how great it was to meet potential candidates.”


Stonemasonry students impress with carvings for Lovell Stone Group competition


Students produced some impressive carvings for a college competition sponsored by Lovell Stone Group.

Full-time and love2learn stonemasonry students spent a week creating carvings to be judged by company directors, who chose four designs to put on display at the Lovell Stone Group stand at the Natural Stone Show.

Taking place from April 25th to April 27th, the Natural Stone Show at the ExCeL arena in London is the only UK exhibition and conference dedicated to the natural stone industry.

Students Sam Bradley, Jeni Wood, David Lambard and Josie Baher will have their work displayed .


For the competition, students were given a piece of Hartham Park Bath stone and asked to create a carving representing the city of Bath. Entries were inspired by the topography, architecture and history of Bath. Some students chose to focus on iconic scenes such as the Royal Crescent and Pulteney Bridge.


James Hart, Sales Director at Lovell Stone Group, said: “The carvings were fantastic, we were really blown away by the quality of the pieces and also the interpretation of the brief.

“We were really impressed by how the students had run with the theme. I know they were coming in outside their normal hours of study, which shows a lot of commitment.


“What we’re really looking forward to is getting people from the industry to come along and vote on them. We’ll have a token voting system on the stand, and in May we’ll visit Bath College to present a cash prize to the winner.”

Stonemasonry lecturer Paul Maggs said: “The stonemasonry department at Bath College were delighted to be offered the opportunity for students to participate in the stone carving competition sponsored by the Lovell Stone Group.

“The students have worked enthusiastically to showcase their skills with outstanding results. We look forward to the next stage where the work of the four finalists will be displayed at the Natural Stone Show in London.”


FoodCycle Bath receives £300 thanks to the second Bath Soup Project


New baking trays will help FoodCycle Bath with its work tackling food waste.
The volunteer-run project has received £300 to buy the trays thanks to the second Bath Soup Project, organised by HND business students at Bath College.
Five community organisations gave a five-minute pitch at the crowdfunding event, raising money for community organisations in Bath with a simple bowl of soup.
FoodCycle Bath received the most votes on the night and the new tins will fit a new oven in place at St Mary’s Catholic Church, making it easier and quicker to serve food.

The project has been serving delicious three-course meals made from surplus food since 2012. Meals take place every Wednesday at 7.30pm and everyone is welcome.
Visitors to the second Bath Soup, at Bath College’s Shrubbery Restaurant, event donated £5 in return for a bowl of soup, donated by the Free Range Chef and a chunk of Bread donated by The Thoughtful Bread Company. At the end of the evening, they chose which organisation to give the takings to.
Those pitching for the cash included the Keynsham Kindness project, Mentoring Plus, the FoodCycle, Bath Welcomes Refugees and Sporting Family Change. Although only one project took the money on the evening, all projects received further offers of support.

Southside Youth Mentoring were the first to benefit from the Bath Soup Project.
Carole Rust, who led the pitch for FoodCycle Bath, said: “The evening has been a great opportunity for sharing contacts and knowledge.
“It’s a bit like our FoodCycle meals – you don’t know what those ingredients are going to do when they’re put together but often the result is awesome. I had no idea we would win the pitch.”
Fiona Bell, hub leader at the FoodCycle Bath, said: “We’re reducing food waste, reducing food poverty and building up communities. We have quite a few regulars and some people say it’s the highlight of their week.”

Employability adviser Lucy Beattie worked with the Bath College students and The Volunteer Centre to plan the event.
She said: “It was a great success, giving the students a chance to work on a live community event and for all of us to hear more about the amazing projects going on in our community.
“It was great to hear how Southside Youth Mentoring are using the funds from the first Soup Project to train their peer mentors and to see new projects being planned for Bath.”
The next Bath Soup Project event is planned for October, follow @bathsoupproject on Twitter


Love2learn exhibition: Artists to showcase their work at 44AD Art Gallery


Picture above by Deanne Lewis

A four-day exhibition at 44AD Art Gallery will showcase the creative talents of students studying part-time Love2learn courses at Bath College.
Titled Palette, the exhibition is inspired by the broad ranges of courses on offer at the college and will include work from a wide variety of artistic disciplines.
The gallery, at Abbey Street Bath, will be filled with fine art paintings, photographs, jewellery, prints and sculptures from March 29th to April 1st.
Work on display will be available for sale, giving people an opportunity to purchase work from emerging and established artists.

Picture by Sophie Overment
Jo Sanders, Deputy Head of Art & Design is curating the exhibition and students from Bath College will be volunteering as guides over the four days.
She said: “There’s always a really high standard of work for the exhibition. Tutors have been collecting work from students over the past couple of months, so there’s a real sense of excitement about the opening.
“Our Love2learn art courses are very popular and there’s a really busy atmosphere in the evenings, with students coming in to learn and perfect their skills.

Picture by Deanne Lewis
“We have a new photography intermediate course for students who completed our beginners course and our ceramics courses are booming – I think people have been inspired by the BBC’s Great Pottery Throw Down.
“Some people might not be aware of this side of the college, and it’s really nice for the students to come together to show their work.
“Katie O’Brien is the project director at 44AD and teaches on our curatorship and studio painting courses. We’re really pleased to be working with her to use 44AD as an exhibition space.”
For some students, the exhibition will be the first opportunity they’ve had to exhibit their work. Prizes will be handed out, including £100 worth of vouchers for the Love2learn student of the year.
An open evening will be held at 44AD on Friday March 31st from 6pm to 8pm and all are welcome to visit. The exhibition will be open from Wednesday March 29th to Saturday April 1st between 11am to 4pm.


Students boost skills with five-month placement at Space Engineering Services


Students at Bath College are completing a five-month work placement with the Bristol-based firm Space Engineering Services to gain hands-on experience to support their studies.
Students Daniel Flint, Daniel Pride, William Duffy, James Dyer and Kamil Danilowicz are studying for the Level 2 VRQ Diploma in Refrigeration/Air Conditioning Equipment Engineering Technology at Bath College.
They are now part of a diverse team at the dedicated refrigeration system manufacturing facility in north Bristol, and will be building on what they’ve learnt at college, with ample opportunity to develop their brazing, electrical, insulation, pressure testing and commissioning capabilities.
Through hands-on experience in a real working environment, the trainees will develop the required skills to move into the next phase of their professional development, which could be the Level 3 Diploma in Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heat Pump Systems.
Space Engineering Services manufacturers an average of 20 refrigeration systems per month at the site in Bristol, many of which are customised to meet customers’ particular requirements.
The students can see how customer specifications are interpreted in the production environment by the firm, whose customer base includes retailers, industrial businesses and public sector organisations.
Tony Mills, Plant Director at Space Engineering Services, said: “It’s vital that we offer opportunities for new talent to join our growing business.
“We have been overwhelmed by the enthusiasm shown by the trainees, their commitment to the work, and how much they have developed in such a short space of time. It’s great to see their genuine interest in manufacturing and desire to progress in the refrigeration and engineering sector.”
Student Will Duffy said: “It’s great to interact with others in a professional environment so I know what to expect in the future. Although I could already braze, I can see how much I have improved in both quality and speed since being here.”
Mr Mills said: “We have worked in partnership with Bath College on a number of initiatives and we’re really pleased to continue to work collaboratively with them on what will be an invaluable career stepping stone for these young men.”
The students will be working for Space Engineering Services for the final five months of their course, between January and May this year.


ICAEW Base accounting challenge: Students come 2nd in regional heat


Students studying business came 2nd in the regional heat for the ICAEW Base accounting challenge at the University of Oxford.
A group of BTEC business and AAT students from Bath College took part in the business and accountancy challenge at St Hugh’s College last month.
The competition is organised and run by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and was open to students nationally.
Teams were asked to analyse a complex case study and identify the actions the business should take to improve its practice.
In the regional heat, the college’s team of business students (Kayley Johnson, Finley Bartlett, Georgia Gentle, Joshua Meyer and Ben Flint) received 2nd place.



Apprentice of the month: James Smith from the Royal United Hospitals Bath


James Smith is working as a Level 2 business administration apprentice at the Royal United Hospitals Bath. He’s working in the hospital’s Quality Improvement Centre and finishes his apprenticeship at the end of May. This month, he spoke to us about his experience so far.
Can you tell me about working at the hospital and what you do as an apprentice?
The Quality Improvement Centre is all about patient experience and health and safety – it looks at how accidents can be prevented. Today my main job is printing papers and organising them for my deputy manager.
I also deliver medical records to staff and I do a lot of scanning and filing. I’ve sat in on four or five meetings and I’ll be doing this again before I finish. I used to work in an elderly care home, so I know what it’s like to work in a care-based environment. I don’t deal with this day to day, but when I see a patient I try and help them.

What do you enjoy about your apprenticeship and what have you learnt?
I’ve learnt that this is definitely the career I want to be in. Data inputting is the most enjoyable thing about my job, I enjoy adding things to databases.
As part of my coursework, I’ve had to talk about understanding communications, managing myself, e-mails, meetings and health and safety, as well as producing documents and managing diary systems. We have to write about all our practical work.
I’ve grown in confidence because my apprenticeship has given me a lot more to talk about in an interview and I’ve grown up a lot (in terms of trying to decide what suits me and what I have to do to get a job). No-one else can decide this for me, it’s something I have to be proactive about.

Why did you choose to study as an apprentice?
I did level 2 public services at Bath College and then travel and tourism. I was searching for a job and I found this apprenticeship after leaving college.
It’s definitely better because you’re getting a qualification and earning money at the same time. I don’t have to work part-time at the weekend and I get social time with people outside of work. I went to college because, at first, I didn’t know what I wanted to do as a career. That’s what a lot of people do and then (when they feel it’s right) they start an apprenticeship.
What’s the next step for you?
If I found a level 3 apprenticeship I would definitely stick to that, and if not, I’m thinking about university. Otherwise, I’ll look for a job if there’s a good progression route.
Do you have any advice for someone considering an apprenticeship?
I would say do an apprenticeship and don’t leave it too late. If you’re not sure what you want to do, get some work experience first. Think about what you want to see yourself doing and find an apprenticeship that’s right for you.


Campaign calling for more disabled sport on TV attracts plenty of support


A national petition calling for broadcasters to show more disabled sport to inspire the next generation of athletes has reached nearly 300 signatures.
Simeon Wakely, from Timsbury, near Bath, set up with the petition with his friend James Ireland, from Essex, after last year’s Olympics.
The pair have been campaigning on the issue with the support of the charity Fixers – set up to give a voice to young people aged 16 to 25.
With the help of Fixers, they have created a film about their campaign, which was shown on ITV West Country, ITV London, ITV Meridian and ITV Anglia last month.

Simeon, a former Bath College student, has Spina Bifida, a condition which stops the spine developing as it should, and needs a wheelchair to get around.
His sporting achievements include playing and coaching for the wheelchair basketball team South West Scorpions and carrying the Olympic torch through Bath in 2012.
He said: “I want to see equal opportunities for disabled people and that’s what motivates me to do campaigns like this. More disability sports shown on TV means that there are more opportunities for people to participate in disabled sport.
“As someone who has done sports for the last eight years, I know that being in a team and being around people who understand what you’re going through is very important.”
Part of Simeon and James’s film was filmed at Bath College last summer, and it also featured British Paralympic athlete Sophie Kamlish.
This month, Simeon visited the college to show the final piece to media students and the students’ union team, who gave some feedback.
Students’ Union President Kez Hawkins said: “I thought the film was really great. I think it’s really good to be pushing for more disability sports on TV – not just wheelchair basketball but all disability sports.”
Sophie, who studied art foundation at Bath College in 2015, came fourth in the T44 100m at last year’s Rio Paralympics.
She said: “It’s very important that people who are disabled see themselves represented on television, especially in sport, showing that we are strong and can do pretty much anything that a non-disabled person can do.”
Simeon, 20, said: “Disability is a label, but it’s not who you are. It shouldn’t define you as a person.
“It’s very important to make sure people understand. Just because we have a disability, it doesn’t mean that we’re not human.”
To sign Simeon and James’s petition click here. To find out more about the work Simeon is doing with local employers and schools click here.


New Construction Skills Centre: Roofing Ceremony

Work on Bath College’s new construction skills centre has reached an exciting stage, with builders about to complete the roofing stage of the build.


The purpose-built facility at Bath College’s Somer Valley Campus in Radstock will be open from September and will allow all construction trades to be taught under one roof.


The team at Bath College took a trip up to the top of the roof to see how building work on the state-of-the-art centre is progressing.


Project Manager Miranda Hill from Midas Group Ltd who are building the centre said:


“The completion of the roof will mark a significant milestone in this project. We’re well on our way to being watertight.


Works on the site are progressing well, the upper roof has been finished, and the lower roof should complete this week. We will then be moving on to the wall cladding and flooring, so the centre is really starting to take shape now.


Karen Fraser, Director of Student Services & Marketing, joined project manager Miranda Hill as they put the final touches to the upper roof.


Karen was invited to drill one of the fixings on the roof and stood on the second floor, made from a giant polished concrete slab. She said:


“It was great to get on site and see how far the project has come – it is exciting to see what an excellent facility will be on offer to students starting this September and beyond.


“Our new workshops will cater for 500 students and apprentices studying bricklaying, construction, carpentry and stonemasonry, as well as plumbing, electrical installation and refrigeration.


“Places are available now for full-time vocational courses for 16 to 18-year-olds, as well as apprenticeships, but they are filling up quickly so students should get their applications in as soon as possible.”


The College are offering local businesses the opportunity to sponsor some of the suites within the new Centre. If your business is interested in joining them please contact daisy.walsh@bathcollege.ac.uk


Find out more about the new Construction Skills Centre.


National Apprenticeship Week: Bath College’s Principal shadows an apprentice


Apprentice Liz Doughty showed Bath College’s Principal what it’s like to work as a trainee veterinary nurse for National Apprenticeship Week.
Principal Laurel Penrose shadowed Liz, who is studying and working as a Level 3 veterinary nursing apprentice with the Bath Vet Group.
She was given a tour of the kennels and cattery at the practice in Odd Down, and was shown how to change a saline drip.
Liz, from Melksham, was working as a kennel assistant at the Bath Vet Group and was offered an apprenticeship after applying for a trainee position to study veterinary nursing.

She said: “Doing an apprenticeship is a fun way to study. I like working at the same time as studying, it helps you apply what you’ve learnt.
“Obviously some days are upsetting because you have a lot of poorly animals, but when you see them go home you know you’ve made a difference.
“I just love the care side of it. I like being able to give them some TLC, and their owners appreciate it if you’re taking care of their animal and you’re talking to them about their pet.
“It’s a very intense course, but our tutor at Bath College has been amazing. I have had a lot of support and I enjoy working with the other students.
“It’s given me a route into the career I wanted. I didn’t think it was possible before, but now I know what I want to do for the rest of my working life.”

Bath College is the largest training provider in Bath and North East Somerset, with almost 530 apprentice in training with over 260 businesses.
The college was chosen as the 2016 Apprenticeship Training Provider of the Year for Bath and Bristol at the Bristol Post and Bath Chronicle Apprenticeship Awards.
Principal Laurel Penrose said: “It’s great value for the employer and a brilliant learning experience for the students. The progression routes are excellent – you can start at GCSE level and go right through to degree level.
“It’s the start of a fantastic career, and I think Liz really epitomises that. She had an interest in animal care, but her interest has become fully fledged through an apprenticeship and it’s affordable (which is the point she made). Without an apprenticeship she wouldn’t have had the opportunity.
“In Liz’s case, she wants to go on to do emergency care. It’s not just an apprenticeship, it’s a doorway to other qualifications. It’s a case of how far an individual wants to take it.”


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.



Studying for a creative apprenticeship: Beth from Bath Aqua Glass shares her story


Beth Howard, 17, is one of four apprentices at Bath Aqua Glass. Bath Aqua Glass is one of the last free-blown glass studios in the UK and is located in the heart of Bath- it has a studio in Walcot Street and a stained glass workshop at its shop by Bath Abbey. Studying as an apprenticeship with the business is a unique experience. Here, Beth shares her story for National Apprenticeship Week.
I studied for a UAL Level 3 diploma in art and design at Bath College for a year and a half, gaining skills in different mediums and techniques. However, I was struggling to decide on a university course and find something that would guarantee a career at the end. Apprenticeships had always been an option, but finding an apprenticeship in the creative field seemed impossible. Through the Bath College apprenticeships board, I noticed that Bath Aqua Glass were looking for a new stained glass apprentice and I jumped at the opportunity.

Being an apprentice at Bath Aqua Glass is extremely rewarding and full of different opportunities that push and challenge you as an individual. I’m learning the ancient skills of stained glass on the job, gaining first-hand experience of all the elements – such as cutting, leading, glass painting, fusing and commissions. Having young people lead the way as the next generation of glass makers (to carry on the British glass industry) is very important to me. It’s about keeping ancient arts and crafts alive for years to come. I am passionate about apprenticeships and how important it is for young people to earn and learn at the same time.
News story: Teenager is the first apprentices to study jewellery making with Bath Aqua Glass

Before working at Bath Aqua Glass I had never cut or used any stained glass. I was thrilled to get the opportunity four months down the line to take part in a stained glass mirror commission and a big commission for the Exeter Life Awards, creating 25 individual trophies. I am mad about colour and how textures are layered. Having the hand-blown glass to use is beautiful and I enjoy creating well-made pieces.

Learning from scratch, I have found elements of my apprenticeship that have pushed me out of my comfort zone artistically and technically. As someone who struggles with maths, I have overcome aspects that have worried me with technical drawings and measurements. I feel that Bath Aqua Glass as a company is one that supports and encourages young people to showcase their talents. They give you the tools, experience and opportunities to become knowledgeable and enriched glass makers once you have completed your apprenticeship.
I chose this apprenticeship because I felt that Bath Aqua Glass would be the right place for me. I felt that I would fit in well with the diverse team and it would be the ideal place for me to grown creatively. My aim is to become as accomplished as the official stained glass artists, to be given commissions and to produce elegant pieces of art – which will be treasured for years to come.


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.


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