27th February 2017
South Devon College are delighted to have won the ‘Employer Engagement’ award at the annual TES FE Awards.
The college has a long and successful track record of developing curricula in partnership with local employers. In South Devon and Torbay, there is a growing hi-tech sector, with a cluster of businesses employing more than 1,000 people. The college has worked to tailor apprenticeships and higher education provision to ensure learners leave with the skills to meet the needs of this industry.
In a strategic attempt to align the college’s offer with local industry, South Devon College has introduced a hi-tech and digital department, which concentrates on working with and supporting local businesses at all levels.
The college is an active member of the Torbay Development Agency, an employer-based forum that meets regularly to discuss technical advancements, economic updates and business opportunities. South Devon College’s hi-tech and digital department is seen as a hub of innovation, supporting businesses with a host of new ideas and developments.
Steve Caunter, Assistant Principal at South Devon College said, “We are thrilled to have won the TES FE Employer Engagement Award. The Hi-Tech and Digital learning culture at the college is developed by highly motivated staff who work in partnership with local employers. Curriculum sector advisory groups are regularly attended by a large number of Hi-Tech employers who are encouraged to share their needs and requirements regarding a future workforce with the Hi-Tech & Digital staff. The college has secured growth deal funding from the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership towards the new Hi-tech and digital centre, based at the Vantage Point campus in Paignton, which aims to boost the local economy and act as a catalyst for growth and job creation by working closely with employers to identify the skills gap in this sector and develop our flexible curriculum.”
Stephen Criddle, Principal said “This is really important recognition for the College and its work with employers as we look forward to building further to support key sectors in Torbay and South Devon. It is a fantastic tribute to all the well qualified and industry linked professional staff at the College”.
The judging panel was impressed by the college’s work to meet the needs of local industry. The judges also praised the fact that the college worked proactively with a large number of small and medium-sized enterprises, rather than relying on one or two large contracts, saying: “They are trying to drive systematic employer engagement from the college out.”
The only college in the South West to win an award, the victory was witnessed by over 600 people, gathered to celebrate the sector’s achievements, at the prestigious awards ceremony held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London, on Friday 24 February.
Other awards at the glittering, black-tie event, hosted by comedian Rob Beckett, included prizes for the FE leader of the year, college of the year and training provider of the year.
Now in their sixth year, the TES FE Awards bring together the most exciting and inspiring individuals and institutions in the sector. Hundreds of FE providers submitted entries for the 16 categories, which showcase achievement in the local community, employer engagement, innovation in teaching, leadership and apprenticeship.
For more information, please visit our website sdcdev or email [email protected] Alternatively, come along to our next Open Evening on the 15th March 2017, 5pm-8pm at our Vantage Point Campus, Long Road, Paignton, TQ4 7EJ.