South Staffordshire College News

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Launch of new Part time Guide in run up to Adult Learners’ Week, 13th – 20th June 2015

Thu, 21/05/2015 - 15:43

Staff at South Staffordshire College are building up to Adult Learners’ Week in style with the launch of their new Part time Guide. Hot off the press and available to download from the College website at www.southstaffs.ac.uk the guide, which provides a snap shot of the exciting range of part time courses on offer for those aged 19+, has been created to provide potential learners with a glimpse into the extensive range of Adult Education opportunities at South Staffordshire College. Adult Learners’ Week is the UK’s largest annual festival of learning; inspiring thousands of people each year to discover how learning can change their lives. During the week, which runs from 13th – 20th June 2015, South Staffordshire College will be offering an exciting programme of FREE taster sessions, from Sugarcraft and Creative Writing, to Spanish and Aromatherapy. Held at locations including Tamworth, Lichfield, Burntwood and Cannock, those interested in finding out more about the full range of tasters can download the flyers below. Lichfield Poster and Schedule – click to download: Tamworth Poster and Schedule – click to download: To book your place please call the College’s Enrolment Team on 0300 456 2424 or for more details about the Tasters please call the Community Team on 01827 304337. Nicola Humphries, Adult and Community Learning Manager for the College says “We’re thrilled to be able to launch our new guide in the run up to Adult Learners’ Week. It’s just one of the many ways that we’re working to offer even greater opportunities for adults who want to find a new hobby or learn new skills for their career development. Whatever people’s motivations and interests, we’re delighted to say that it’s ALL at SSC.” Carol Page, Senior Development worker in the Adult Learning Department at South Staffordshire College adds “At South Staffordshire College, we’re always keen to remind people in the local community that education isn’t just for Children. On the contrary, we’re seeing an increasing number of people joining us to learn new skills, meet new people and do something they enjoy. Adult Learners’ Week is the ideal opportunity to come along and have some fun. We’re really looking forward to welcoming people in to our Taster Sessions.” In addition to those courses running during Adult Learners’ Week, South Staffordshire College offer a comprehensive programme of Adult Leisure and Learning courses, which run during the day, at evenings and at weekends throughout the year. Available onsite at the College campuses in Tamworth, Lichfield, Cannock and Rodbaston and also at several community venues, adult education has never been so accessible! To find out more, or download the new part time guide, visit: www.southstaffs.ac.uk

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South Staffordshire College Learner Joshua Griffiths is part of a winning team!

Wed, 20/05/2015 - 12:03

South Staffordshire College learner Joshua Griffiths, who studies Routes to Vocational Learning at the College’s Cannock Campus is celebrating his success away from the classroom having recently won the league cup with his football team the ‘Stafford Dragons’. The Dragons, a team with a broad range of disabilities who represent Stafford, competed against 6 other teams to take the title, after a thrilling title race which was held at Rowley Park on Sunday 29th March 2015. Following an outstanding performance on the day, Joshua and his team, were thrilled to be named winners of the 2014/2015 Ability Counts League. Team members were presented with medals and a trophy on the day to recognise their achievements. Joshua’s lecturer and Course Leader at South Staffordshire College Carmen Davis, says “It’s a genuine delight to hear about the success of our students outside of their studies. Joshua’s achievement is a real testament to his hard work and commitment. Naturally, all of the staff here at South Staffordshire College are over the moon for both him and his team mates. Well done Josh!” If you’re interested in finding out more about the range of Routes to Vocational courses on offer at South Staffordshire College or want to find out more about life as a College student, visit: www.southstaffs.ac.uk

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Exciting new range of Higher Education courses for September 2015!

Wed, 20/05/2015 - 11:41

At South Staffordshire College, we believe that by taking your education to the next level, you’ll be better equipped to reach your full potential and achieve your ambitions. That’s why, along with our Partner Universities – Staffordshire University and the University of Wolverhampton, we’re launching a fantastic range of new Higher Education courses for this September! The best news is – it’s not too late to apply! Adding to an already exciting range of HE programmes that includes everything from a BSc Hons in Film and Television Production to a BA Hons in Business Management, these new qualifications are designed to help you take charge of your future by building the practical skills, knowledge and experience you need to open up a wealth of career opportunities in the industry you love. Did you know? Employment forecasts predict that 50% of vacancies until 2020 will be in areas most likely to demand graduates On average, graduates earn £100,000 more over their working lives that those who don’t go on to Higher Education Our students have gone on to work at businesses including the BBC, ITV and the RSPCA Our full time feeds are normally over £2000 cheaper per year than most universities Many of our HE courses can be studied either full-time or part-time, giving you complete flexibility and the option to fit your studies in around existing commitments As our HE courses are offered in conjunction with our partner Universities – Staffordshire University and the University of Wolverhampton, when you study with us, you’ll also have access to their fantastic facilities and support too! So what’s new… Foundation Degree in Equine Training, Behaviour and Performance In conjunction with the University of Wolverhampton With a combined economic impact of £7b, Britain’s equine industry is thriving and the demand for skilled workers is continues to grow. A key growth area within the equestrian industry, this course provides people with the opportunity to develop the skills required for a career in equitation science. What’s hot? Delivered through a blend of theoretical and practical training, you’ll develop the equestrian skills and qualifications required to pursue a successful career. You’ll cover a range of innovative modules, including Equine Therapy and Rehabilitation, Equine Training, Equitation Science and much more! You’ll develop your skills in one of the best and specialist equine centres in the UK, on-site at Rodbaston Campus. Full – time applications Campus: Rodbaston Campus Code: R Institution code: W75 UCAS Course Code: D422 For part-time applications, please call our dedicated team on 0300 456 2424 BSc (Hons) Animal Science with Animal Behaviour In conjunction with Staffordshire University Available as a 1 year top-up from our Foundation Degree in Animal Science with Animal Behaviour, this course is perfect for those who want to develop the high level skills for a career that focuses on the behaviour, welfare and nutrition of animals – an industry, which according to Lantra is worth over £1 billion to the UK. What’s hot? You’ll study at the exceptional 180 hectare Rodbaston Estate, which is home to an impressive animal collection that consists of hundreds of species You’ll study a blend of practical and theoretical modules, including Animal Behaviour, Business Practise and much more Full – time applications Campus: Rodbaston Campus Code: U Institution code: S72 Call 0300 456 2424 For part-time applications, please call our dedicated team on 0300 456 2424 Foundation Degree Event Management In conjunction with the University of Wolverhampton As the UK’s reputation as a global business destination of choice grows, highly qualified, skilled events specialists are in demand. Designed to give you the skills to forge a career as a successful events management professional in the Leisure and Service industries, if you dream of delivering innovative events for tomorrow’s business leaders, this course if for you. What’s hot? You’ll study an exciting range of modules, from managing events and venues to management and minance themes You’ll study a blend of practical and theoretical modules, including Understanding Events and Venue Management, the world of work – employability, leisure operations management and the application of such skills on events planned and organised by yourself. Full – time applications Campus: Tamworth Campus Code: U Institution code: W75 Call 0300 456 2424 For part-time applications, please call our dedicated team on 0300 456 2424 Foundation Degree Photography In conjunction with Staffordshire University The UK’s creative industries employ over 2m people and the sector is forecast to play an even bigger role in the UK economy over the coming years. If you dream being a part of the industry and want to develop your conceptual, creative and technical photography skills, this is the course for you. What’s hot? You’ll study an exciting range of modules, from professional development in photography to creative influences You’ll study at our Lichfield campus, which is home to state-of-the-art photographic studios and facilities Full – time applications Campus: Lichfield Campus Code: U Institution code: S72 Call 0300 456 2424 For part-time applications, please call our dedicated team on 0300 456 2424 To find out more about our full range of Higher Education courses, click here. Planning ahead? If you’re thinking about studying for a Higher Education qualification starting in September 2016, you’re in luck! We’ll be launching even more HE courses for 2016, including a Foundation Degree in Music Production and Technology and a HND in Mechanical Engineering! Look out for our 2016/2017 HE prospectus – coming soon! To keep up to date with the latest news find us on Facebook /SouthStaffordshireCollege or follow us on Twitter @southstaffs

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South Staffordshire College to Heat Up Gilbert and Sullivan’s ‘Mikado’ in Jazz/Swing Musical

Mon, 18/05/2015 - 13:03

Musical Theatre Degree students of Staffordshire University and South Staffordshire College hit the stage of The Lichfield Garrick this month with ‘Hot Mikado’, the hilarious hit jazz / swing adaptation of Gilbert and Sullivan’s classic operetta. Staged under the banner of the institution’s in house theatre company ‘House of Greasepaint Productions’, this is an explosion of colour where East meets West head-on in this 1940′s-style update featuring classics including; A Wand’ring Minstrel I, Three Little Maids and many more. Find out what happens when the clean lines of Japanese design combine with the big band sights and sounds of popular American song and dance! Stepping into the Nanki-Poo’s shoes is Tamworth’s Daniel Roberts who also played Robbie Hart in ‘The Wedding Singer’ and Chad in ‘All Shook Up’ at The Garrick last year, alongside fellow student from Dunstable, Bedfordshire, Abbie Mead who plays Yum-Yum, the ward of Ko-Ko, the Lord High Executioner of Titipu. Playing the very pink Ko-Ko is Chase Terrace’s Jamie Jones, with Alfie Kentesber as Pooh-Bah, Elliot Lolley as Pish-Tush, Kaii Songhurst as Pitti-Sing and Vitalyia Harbord as Peep-Bo. Rounding off the cast are James Rowney as the titular Mikado and Rachel Wrighte as incredibly scary man-eater Katisha. South Staffordshire College Performing Arts Department are already well known for their specialism in Musical Theatre training at BTEC level with all productions having been a huge success for both the team and the students, earning reviews of 4 and 5 stars from industry online publication Remotegoat, however this is the first Musical Theatre degree production for the college. To see why South Staffordshire College Performing Arts Department have been critically acclaimed, why not book to see ‘Hot Mikado’ which runs at The Lichfield Garrick Theatre from 27th – 30th May. Tickets are £12 and can be booked in person at The Garrick Box Office or over the phone on 01543 412121, or alternatively, you can book online at www.lichfieldgarrick.com If you dream of treading the boards on the West End or want to be a star of the silver screen, you can find out about the exciting range of Performing Arts courses at South Staffordshire College by visiting: www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/performing-arts/ Applications are still being accepted for this September and you can ‘sign up’ online in just 25 seconds! Twitter: @SSCPerfArts @southstaffs Facebook: SouthStaffordshireCollege

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South Staffordshire College Graduate’s first feature film is ‘nothing short of epic’

Mon, 18/05/2015 - 12:43

South Staffordshire Graduate Jim Page is feeling ‘magical’ following the launch of his first commercial feature film ‘Arthur and Merlin’. The adrenaline fuelled movie, has been received to much acclaim with Pixel Dynamo calling it “Nothing short of epic” and stating that it has “the same sense of scale and grandeur that Peter Jackson or Chris Columbus could create”. High praise indeed! Inspired by the same Celtic myths that J.R.R. Tolkien read as a young man, Arthur and Merlin is an epic fantasy adventure of good against evil, that tells the story of these two iconic characters as you’ve never seen it before. Produced to cinema quality on a low budget, it’s a truly remarkable achievement in independent filmmaking. It seems the movie has also had quite an impact amongst its intended audience, with positive feedback such as “amazing movie” “the best feature-length movie I’ve ever seen” and “Great film – chills down my spine” flooding in via social media. Naturally, having edited the movie, Jim, who studied at Film and Television Production and both FE and HE level at South Staffordshire College’s Lichfield campus, is thrilled with the feedback and is rightly proud of his achievement. When asked how his studies at South Staffordshire College contributed to his career success Jim says “The course opened my eyes to the different filmmaking departments and helped me realise that Editing was what I wanted to do. It gave me practical real world experience, so that when I left I already had a portfolio of work and an understanding of working in a professional environment. Above all, the lecturers helped give me the confidence to start my journey, and made me a better person.” Terry Foster, one of Jim’s tutors and Award Leader BSc & FdSc Film & Television at South Staffordshire College says “We’re delighted for Jim! During his time with us, he was very passionate about filmmaking and had an insatiable thirst for knowledge, always wanting to do better. He played a crucial role as Editor in our Student’s award-winning film “Dead Trees” and now plays a valuable part in helping to inspire our current students through guest speaking events. It’s fantastic to see him forging such a successful career in the industry.” In addition to ‘Arthur and Merlin’, Jim’s credits also include “Alex Polizzi: The Fixer” and the documentary series “Walking the Amazon”. To see Arthur and Merlin for yourself, simply visit: http://www.arthurandmerlin.co.uk   Jim is just one of many South Staffordshire College students who have gone on to pursue successful careers in the Creative Arts Industry, with others having secured roles at Warner Brothers Studios, the BBC and ITV. If you dream of following in their footsteps and want to find out more about the fantastic range of courses on offer visit: www.southstaffs.ac.uk Applications are still being accepted for this September, and you can ‘sign up’ online in just 25 seconds! Twitter: @southstaffs Facebook: SouthStaffordshireCollege

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Tamworth residents invited to brush up their creative skills at a free art workshop with SSC

Mon, 27/04/2015 - 11:45

South Staffordshire College would like to invite budding artists to join them at a FREE ‘live’ art workshop in Ankerside Shopping Centre in the town centre on Saturday 2nd May 2015, from 10am-4pm. The workshop, which forms part of an exciting project to turn Tamworth into an Art Gallery will be run by South Staffordshire College Art and Design Course Leader Andy Nash and is open to people of all ages and abilities. The project is being run as part of ‘I am Visual Art’ – one of many elements of the ambitious I Am Tamworth project, a 12-month celebration of the arts organised by Tamworth Borough Council’s Arts and Events team. Designed to inspire, excite and encourage people from across the borough to become involved in the arts, this ‘I am Visual Arts’ project will see empty shops and spaces turned into pop-up galleries in a bid to provide a platform for hidden local talent and breath new life into the town centre. There will be 3 exhibitions this year, with the first ‘Tamworth: The People and The Place’ set to go live in vacant units and buildings throughout the town centre for two weeks from 30th May. “The purpose of the South Staffordshire College workshop is to help people gain the confidence and skills to prepare their own work for submission to the exhibition.” says Andy Nash. “This is a fantastic opportunity for South Staffordshire College to help the local community develop new skills and embrace their creativity. We’re delighted to be a part of such a positive initiative and to provide aspiring artists from all walks of life with the opportunity to express themselves through art.” Anyone who joins the workshop, which will be taking place in the former Clarks Shoe Shop, will also be invited to contribute towards a special collaborative piece that will be displayed in the town. There is no need to book, simply drop in on the day.   South Staffordshire College offer a wide range of Art and Design Courses for both full and part time learners. Applications are still being accepted for this september. to find out more, or apply online in just 25 seconds visit: www.southstaffs.ac.uk Twitter: @southstaffs Facebook: SouthStaffordshireCollege For more details on how to make a submission to the ‘I am Visual Arts’ exhibition visit: www.tamworthassemblyrooms.co.uk/i-am-tamworth/i-am-visual-art

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New Adult Part-Time Courses start this week at South Staffordshire College

Mon, 27/04/2015 - 10:53

Do you want to boost your career prospects or find a new hobby? Do you want some valuable ‘me time’ over the summer? With an exciting range of part-time adult courses starting this week, South Staffordshire College are on hand to help. Open to adults aged 19+, the range of short courses cover a vast array of subjects, from Indian Cookery, Photography and Creative Writing to Sugarcraft, Cake Decorating and Computing. There are also a fantastic range of FREE ‘Taster’ Sessions in subjects including Travel and Tourism, Counselling and Hair & Beauty for those who want to enjoy an introduction to their chosen subject. With many of the courses delivered at local venues as well as on the South Staffordshire College campuses, the courses are easy to access and many are completely free of charge. For those that do have a fee attached, there are a range of discounts available, including 50% off for those in receipt of some income based benefits. For those people in receipt of JSA/ESA, all of the courses are completely free of charge. To find out more about the range of Adult Part-Time courses on offer visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/community-education To ‘sign up’ now and book your place, call 01827 304337

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South Staffordshire College is the corporate sponsor of the Staffordshire County Show!

Thu, 23/04/2015 - 14:28

The Countdown to this year’s Staffordshire County Show has begun and South Staffordshire College are proud to be the main sponsors once again. The County Show, which will be taking place at the Staffordshire County Showground on Wednesday 27th and Thursday 28th May 2015, is one of the largest events in Staffordshire and is a fantastic day out for all the family. It’s also the perfect opportunity for visitors to find out more about the amazing opportunities and facilities available at their local South Staffordshire College campuses. The College will once again be staging what’s proven to be one of the show’s highlights, the ‘Animal Zone Experience’, organised by the Rodbaston Campus Animal Zone Manager, John Buchan. With a number of fascinating hands-on Animal activities to enjoy, plus the opportunity to win a ‘Family Meerkat Experience’ worth £100, this year, the programme is set to be bigger and better than ever! Located in the Country Pursuits area of the showground, the Animal Zone Marquee will give children of all ages the chance to get up close to the range of cuddly (and not-so-cuddly) creatures. Calves, goats, rabbits and guinea pigs will all be roaming within the area, while mice, reptiles and some creepy crawlies will look on from their cages. Visitors to the College’s main stand (F79), which is located opposite the main arena, will also have the opportunity to try their hand at a range of hands-on activities, including plant propagation and milking a cow! Staff from the College will also be on hand to offer advice and guidance about the exciting range of courses and apprenticeships available at their Rodbaston Campus, including Animal Care, Veterinary Care, Agriculture, Floristry and many more. This September, there will be even more choice for aspiring learners, following the launch of a range of new courses including a Foundation Degree in Equine Behaviour, Training and Performance and a BSc (Hons) in Animal Science with Animal Behaviour. If that’s not enough, this year, for the very first time, the College will also be running an exciting range of have-a-go activities from the brand new Leisure and Learning Marquee. Home to a range of family friendly FREE workshops including Spanish, Photography, Sugarcraft and many more, this is a great opportunity to enjoy a taste of some of the hundreds of Part Time Courses on offer at South Staffordshire College. The courses themselves, which are run during the day, evenings and weekends across all campuses and at various outreach centres in the local community, are a fantastic way to find a new hobby, meet new people or even develop new skills to help boost career prospects. Many of the courses are completely free of charge and for those that have a fee, there will be exclusive ‘County Show’ discounts on offer to those who want to sign up! South Staffordshire College’s association with the show reflects its close ties to the rural economy. At its Rodbaston Campus the College offers a unique range of land-based courses, and award-winning developments on the site have added a new dimension to the facilities. Chief Executive Principal of the College, Graham Morley, says involvement with the show is a mark of the importance the College places on its relationship with the Staffordshire rural community. “This event is always one of the highlights of the year for the people of the area and with our strong involvement in the rural enterprise economy of Staffordshire it is quite natural that we should retain our role as main sponsors. We’re thrilled to be involved in such a fantastic event again for 2015.”   The Staffordshire County Showground is situated on the A518 Stafford to Uttoxeter Road, just four miles from Stafford. To find out more about the range of courses on offer at South Staffordshire College visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk Applications are still being accepted for this September and you can sign up online in just 25 seconds! Twitter: @southstaffs Facebook: SouthStaffordshireCollege

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New reptile house ‘scales-up’ South Staffordshire College’s facilities

Thu, 23/04/2015 - 12:44

South Staffordshire College is celebrating the opening of its brand new reptile house. The latest residents slithered into their new home at Rodbaston Campus’ Animal Zone on Saturday 18th April and the enclosure is now open to members of the public. The collection was completed with the most recent resident’s arrival, a Caledonian giant gecko. The new reptile facility now houses one of the largest collections of reptiles in an animal welfare college in the UK. The college is now the only one in the UK to home Caiman Lizards and will be entering into a breeding programme with zoos around the country to help protect this endangered species. Contributors to the new facility include the Zoological Society of London, Chester Zoo, Dudley Zoo and Cotswold Wildlife Park, who have donated an exciting range of reptiles that are unavailable through the pet trade, helping to provide additional learning opportunities for Animal Care students and educate both students and visitors about the importance of reptiles in conservation. Animal Care students from the college helped to create the new reptile house, from designing the enclosures and displays to building and painting them and creating all of the signage. Visitors will also have the opportunity to meet the reptile keeper during sessions throughout the day where they can handle the snakes, geckos and skinks. John Buchan, Animal Zone Manager at South Staffordshire College, said: “The new reptile house is a really exciting project for us. As well as providing our visitors with the chance to learn and explore more about reptiles that they would otherwise be unable to see outside of a zoo, it is also a perfect showcase of the hard work of our students, who played a fundamental role in making the reptile house come to life. This is a venture that will really help put us on the map, enabling us to work with zoological collections throughout the UK to make an important contribution to breeding programmes.” Rodbaston’s Animal Zone boasts over 650 different animals from around the world. The Animal Zone is open from 10am until 4pm on weekends and daily throughout school holidays*. Guests do not need to pre-book; just turn up on the day and entry is £5.20 for adults, £4.20 for children, free for under 3s and a family ticket for two adults and two children is just £16. Parking is free. Visitors can also take advantage of a current Groupon offer for 50% off a family ticket, seeing the price reduced to just £8 for a family of four. Adult tickets can also be purchased for £3 each. For further details visit www.groupon.co.uk For further information about South Staffordshire College and the Animal Zone, visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk or call 0300 456 2424. * Based on Staffordshire term dates. About Us South Staffordshire College occupies five campuses in Cannock, Lichfield, Rodbaston and two in Tamworth. The college attracts over 4,000 students every year. Providing a diversified range of courses to suit every learning style and offering the very best in further education, higher education and apprenticeships, South Staffordshire College offers a range of first-class facilities, including a zoo, motor vehicle workshop and an equine centre that is recognised as being one of the best in the UK. Not only does it provide a popular venue for dressage and show jumping shows and equestrian societies, it also offers a range of training and exams in partnership with the BHS (British Horse Society). With valuable experience in both industry and commerce, the college has strong links with both local and national employers, providing successful work-based learning programmes that meet the needs of both businesses and learners.

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Access a brighter future at South Staffordshire College

Wed, 22/04/2015 - 16:37

Do you have career ambitions but need help achieving your goals? Have you been out of education for a while and want to take steps towards a more rewarding future? South Staffordshire College can help you get on track with their broad range of Access to Higher Education qualifications. Ideal for those who want to study for a Degree but don’t have the required entry requirements, or for those who want to retrain to embark on an exciting new career journey, these courses are the ideal platform to re-introduce yourself to studying. Better still, they can be completed in just one year, so achieving your goals could be easier (and quicker) than you think! Available in a variety of pathways including Health for those who would like a career such as Midwifery, Nursing and Paramedic Science to Business and Management, for those who want to work is Management, Finance or Marketing, South Staffordshire College’s Access Courses are also available at Tamworth, Cannock and Lichfield Campuses. Curriculum Team Leader at South Staffordshire College, Kerry Adam says “In days gone by, many people left school at 16 (or younger) and entered directly into work. Today, we’re seeing an increasingly high number of applications from people who, years down the line, have decided the time is right for them to follow their heart and pursue their dream career. Our Access to HE courses are ideal for these people and it’s an absolute pleasure to be able to help people on their journey.” The success rates of these courses also speak for themselves, with an impressive 85% of learners going on into Higher Education or employment last year. Student satisfaction rates are also high, with current and previous learners having nothing but positive feedback on their Access experience with the College. Annette Price-Porter says “In January 2011 I suffered a great loss in my life, from this loss I was left a small legacy, rather than waste the money I decided I would like to enrich my life by going back into education. As a mature student I found it very daunting, however my fears soon diminished as the tutors and fellow students were very reassuring and easy going. All tutors delivered lectures clear and precise, interacting with every student, supporting and assisting them on any difficulties which arose, I gained so much confidence. The experience was amazing! I learnt so many new skills which gave me the tools to prepare my journey into university. I currently study at the University of Wolverhampton studying a BA Honours Degree in Criminology, the Criminal Justice System and Social Care. I have now applied to become a Magistrate but without furthering my education at South Staffordshire College Cannock Campus and the marvellous work and efforts all tutors put in, I would never have been able to reach my goal. I would highly recommend the Access to HE course whether young or old, you’re never too old to start learning a new skill; I am so pleased I did!” South Staffordshire College Access to HE Courses are offered in the following subject areas: Health, Humanities, Art and Design, ICT, Business and Management and Engineering. Applications are still being taken for this September. To find out more, visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/access/

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SSC Agriculture Students win ‘Great Farm Challenge’ for the second year running

Tue, 21/04/2015 - 12:00

Level 3 Agriculture students from South Staffordshire College are basking in the glory of having won the Inter College ‘Great Farm Challenge’ for the second year running. The Challenge, which is run by Severn Trent Water, East Anglian Water, The Environment Agency and Catchment Sensitive Farming provides College students from across the region with the opportunity to produce proposals for how they would improve a farm which they have visited. This year, students visited a dairy farm near Shifnal and given just 2 weeks to work in small teams to complete a review of this farm and another case study farm situated on the river Leam in Warwickshire which they had not visited. Those with the best proposals for both were then invited to present their ideas to a panel of 5 judges and other finalists at an event which took place on 19th March at the Arthur Rank Centre, Stoneleigh Park. South Staffordshire College saw two student groups progress into the finals and having beaten off stiff competition from Walford College, Warwickshire College and Moulton College, one group were crowned champions. The winning team, which was made up of first year students, Sophie McDonald, Ryan Crowther, Emily Towlson and Oliver Pratt, are delighted with their achievement and say “it was so daunting to stand in front of the judges and other finalists to give our presentation; I think we were all shaking! It has made us realise how important it is to correctly manage the environment while going about daily tasks on the farm” South Staffordshire College Agriculture course tutor Sarah Winson is delighted with the outcome and says “All of the students involved in this competition worked extremely hard and should be very proud of their well-deserved victory. They took the competition, which teaches them the importance of water pollution and nutrient conservation on farms, an essential part of modern agriculture very seriously and rehearsed their presentation constantly in the run up to the finals. It’s a great achievement for the students and also for the Agriculture tutors at the college, who work tirelessly to help our students achieve their goals. We’re delighted with the outcome.” Following their success, the students were awarded with £300 in Amazon Vouchers and a trophy. South Staffordshire College offer a range of Agriculture courses, all of which can be applied for online in just 25 seconds.   To find out more about studying Agriculture at South Staffordshire college visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/agriculture/ or call 0300 456 2424

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South Staffordshire College Apprentices lay winning foundations for their future

Wed, 08/04/2015 - 15:06

Bricklaying Apprentices from South Staffordshire College are building solid foundations for their future careers after huge success at a prestigious ‘Guild of Bricklayers’ competition. Established in 1932, the Guild of Bricklayers aims to promote and maintain the highest standards of craftsmanship in brickwork. Held in Stoke-on-Trent on 31st March 2015, the competition, which sees aspiring young Bricklayers from throughout the region compete at both junior and senior level, was the perfect opportunity for competitors from South Staffordshire College to show off their skills to a range of industry experts and professionals. South Staffordshire College entrant Oliver Ingram fought off stiff competition to be crowned winner of the ‘Young Achievers Award’ and Senior competitor James Robinson performed exceptionally well, becoming runner up in the Senior category. Doug Benson, Construction Trainer & Assessor at South Staffordshire College says “The standard of work by our two Apprentices in this competition was absolutely fantastic. I would like to congratulate both of them on their success and thank their tutor, Leigh Jakeman for all the hard work and commitment involved in helping Oliver and James earn their well-deserved awards.” Tutor, Leigh Jackman in understandably thrilled with the results. “Both Oliver and James have worked extremely hard to develop their skills during their apprenticeship programme and it’s great to see that hard work being recognised at the Guild of Bricklayers Awards. It’s been an absolute pleasure to work alongside them both and it’s great to see the investment in our students paying off.” Following the recent success at these awards, it seems the Bricklaying apprentices have developed a taste for winning and next on the agenda is the Skill-Build competition. This event, which takes place on 2nd June and is run by CITB with the endorsement of WorldSkills competition managers for the bi-annual WorldSkills competitions, sees the very best in construction talent compete against each other to be crowned the Skill-Build winner in their chosen trade. Having been running for over 45 years, there are awards up for grabs in ten craft occupations including Bricklaying, Carpentry, Plastering and many more. If you want to take the first steps towards a career in the construction industry and would like to know more about the range of courses and Apprenticeships on offer at South Staffordshire College, visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk where you can apply online in just 25 seconds! To find out more about the benefits of Apprenticeships visit: www.southstaffs.ac.uk/news/newsitem/?id=8401 or call the Apprenticeships Team on 01785 710529.

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Performing Arts Students receive excellent reviews at Lichfield Garrick Performances

Mon, 30/03/2015 - 10:23

Performing Arts Students from South Staffordshire College have stars in their eyes following their recent performances of “See How they Run” and “Tick, Tick, Boom!” at the Lichfield Garrick Theatre. The performances, which took place on Wednesday 18th and Thursday 19th March are the result of months of hard work by the students and staff alike, and have received much acclaim, having been attended by critics from both “Love Midlands Theatre” and “Remotegoat”. “Sitting, watching the BTEC Performing Arts students was rewarding” say ‘Love Midlands Theatre’. “It was as if I’d had the opportunity to look through a window into the future and watch the emerging talent in the Midlands.” See How They Run: Remotegoat gave ‘Tick, Tick, Boom” an impressive 4 star review and said “South Staffordshire College Performing Arts Department has a well deserved reputation for producing high quality productions, and their latest production did nothing to harm this. Laurie Asher’s assured directing and choreography, and Mark Bayliss’s musical direction gave this performance a slick production value, whilst also using the main characters and the general ensemble to their best advantage.” Tick Tick Boom: Feedback from other audience members and via social media has also been extremely positive. “Fantastic night watching Tick Tick Boom” says one spectator. “Such talented student s – first class performance from all. Loved the dialogue and the songs sung wonderfully. Full of warmth and humour! Magical!” Naturally, the students and staff are delighted that their performances have been so well received and Performing Arts Course Leader Laurie Asher says “I’m extremely proud of the students. They have worked very hard to deliver two fantastic shows and I’d like to thank them all for their commitment and enthusiasm. We’re delighted that the shows have been so well received. I’d also like to extend huge thanks to those who support our department by buying tickets for our shows. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to continue to produce such high quality productions. All of the profits generated are reinvested back into our department, so that we can continue to provide our learners with such fantastic performance opportunities.” The Performing Arts Department at South Staffordshire College continues to go from strength to strength and in the past year, has seen student numbers double. This success, coupled with an increasing demand in the local community, has led to the launch of a new Foundation Degree in Musical Theatre. This course, along with the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Performing Arts (Musical Theatre), gives those who dream of treading the boards in the West End, or being a star on the big screen the perfect grounding for a career in this highly competitive industry. If you’d like to see the students in action, the next production by South Staffordshire College BTEC Level 3 Students is “Merrily We Roll Along” which runs on 23rd and 24th June at the Lichfield Garrick. Written by Stephen Sondheim, who also wrote ‘Into the woods’ and ‘Sweeny Todd’, and with rehearsals now well underway, this performance is shaping up to be another roaring success. If you can’t wait that long, Greasepaint Productions – South Staffordshire College’s in-house production company for the Foundation Degree in Musical Theatre, will also be staging ” Hot Mikado” the hit jazz / swing musical adaptation of Gilbert and Sullivan’s classic operetta ‘The Mikado’. Also taking place at the Lichfield Garrick, this show will run from Wednesday 27th – Saturday 30th May 2015. Tickets for both of these shows are available now from the Lichfield Garrick Box Office. Call 01543 412121 or visit www.lichfieldgarrick.com to get yours now! If you want to find out more about studying Performing Arts at South Staffordshire College, visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk/performing-arts/ where you can apply online in just 25 seconds.

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SSC Employer Engagement Team Deliver Tailor Made Training to Staffordshire Police

Thu, 26/03/2015 - 13:02

The Employer Engagement team at South Staffordshire College are working with the Staffordshire Police Force by providing tailor made practical training packages to help them develop the necessary skills to handle cattle, sheep, pigs and reptiles. The workshops, which were delivered last week by expert staff from the College’s Rodbaston Campus were designed to help equip participants with the knowledge and expertise needed to deliver a part of their job that they have previously not received formal training in. John Renshaw, Manager of the Apprenticeships and Employer Engagement Team at South Staffordshire College says “When people think about the responsibilities of the Police Force, they seldom think about the need for them to effectively and safely handle animals, yet when serving rural communities, this is a very real part of their job. We’re thrilled to be working alongside the Staffordshire Force to help provide expert, bespoke training that specifically responds to their needs.” The training has been extremely well received by those who have taken part, with 100% of participants who provided feedback saying the session was useful and informative. Other comments include: “The most useful course I have attended in 27 years!” “Absolutely fantastic day. Extremely useful and thoroughly enjoyable. I’m looking forward to coming back!” In addition to the Police Force, the Team at South Staffordshire College work alongside over 500 businesses per year providing bespoke training packages designed to upskill staff, boost productivity and increase profits. All training is delivered by Industry experts and offered with flexible delivery methods that meet the needs of the individual business. Serving a range of industry sectors from Veterinary and Animal Care to Agriculture and Horticulture, if you would like to find out more about how your business could benefit visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk/employers/ or call 01785 710529

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Little Learners Nursery Receives a ‘Good’ rating from Ofsted

Mon, 23/03/2015 - 12:27

The staff and children at South Staffordshire College’s Little Learners Nursery are celebrating the success of a recent Ofsted inspection giving them a ‘Good’ rating. The Nursery, based on the College’s Cannock Campus, received impressive grades and confirmed how well the Early Years provision is meeting the needs of the range of children who attend. The Inspectors reported that “Staff skilfully support children’s learning and provide good quality teaching and experiences based around children’s interests. This results in children actively learning through their play and gaining the skills required in preparation for school.” The report also shows that staff and children enjoy relationships that are warm, close and supportive and that the individual needs of each child are met. Staff are commended for their relationships with parents and carers to ensure that children are kept safe and enjoy a personalised learning experience. Following the inspection, staff are understandably proud, with Little Learners Nursery Manager Kelly O’Grady saying “We are thrilled with the inspection outcome which clearly shows that the staff are experienced and work well together to ensure high quality care for all our children.” In addition to providing a vital childcare resource for both students and staff with children and the wider public, Little Learners Nursery also provides a perfect learning environment for those students who are studying for qualifications in Childcare. Looking for childcare? The Nursery, which caters for children from Birth to School age and offers Free Nursery Education Funding for 2 , 3 and 4 year olds, currently has spaces available at both the Cannock and Tamworth campuses. To find out more call 01543 438 737 (Cannock) or 01827 304 342 (Tamworth) or visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk/nurseries Want to study childcare? South Staffordshire College offer a range of exciting courses at both FE and HE level. Find out more, or apply online in just 25 seconds by visiting www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/childcare/  

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New Equine Foundation Degree

Mon, 23/03/2015 - 12:24

According to Lantra, Britain’s equine industry has a combined economic impact of £7 billion and demand for highly qualified and skilled workers continues to increase. In response to this demand, South Staffordshire College have recently bolstered their Higher Education provision by launching a new Foundation Degree in Equine Behaviour, Training and Performance in conjunction with the University of Wolverhampton. A key growth area within the equestrian industry, the course embraces the knowledge required for a career in the equitation science industry. Students will study a wide range of modules including Advances in Equine Therapy and Rehabilitation, Equitation Science performance, Animal welfare and ethics and many more. Delivered at South Staffordshire College’s 180 hectare rural estate, students will be taught by equine industry professionals and have access to some of the finest learning facilities at the onsite Rodbaston Equestrian centre, which is recognised as one of the best and most well-resourced specialist equine centres in the UK. What’s more, with options to study either full or part time, learners can tailor their education to fit in with other commitments. Sharon Bedlow, Higher Education Manager at South Staffordshire College says: “We’re delighted to be offering this exciting new course in partnership with the University of Wolverhampton. The demand for skilled workers in the equestrian industry, combined with our outstanding facilities, and highly experienced staff, means we’re the ideal place to study.” For those with an interest in pursuing a career in related fields such as Animal Care, South Staffordshire College also offer related Higher Education courses including a Foundation Degree in Animal Science and Behaviour, and a brand new BSc (Hons) in Animal Science with Animal Behaviour, which is launching this September. Run in conjunction with Staffordshire University, these courses are ideal for those who want to pursue a career in the £1 billion UK Animal Care Industry, The success rates of South Staffordshire College’s Animal Care courses are impressive and previous learners have progressed to work for a number of prestigious businesses, including West Midlands Safari Park, Drayton Manor Park, the RSPCA and the Dogs Trust. To find out more about these courses, including information on how to apply, visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk where you can download the latest Higher Education prospectus.

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Art and Media students enjoy a breathtaking Parisian experience

Mon, 23/03/2015 - 12:03

Art and Media students from South Staffordshire College have their creative juices flowing, having recently returned from a 4 day cultural trip to Paris. The Trip, which took place from 10th – 13th March, provided Learners studying courses including Creative Media, Film, TV and journalism and Art and Design pathways including photography, graphics and fashion, with the opportunity to experience, first hand, a range of cultural excursions. Highlights included a city river cruise and trips to the Louvre and Pompidou Art Galleries, where they enjoyed a mix of classical and contemporary art work. Some students even had the opportunity to meet Parisian artists in residence in their working studios at a central art house. For those interested in fast-paced action, the trip also included the chance to explore the Studios at the Disney Parks and enjoy a range of behind the scenes tours. Learners also visited the ‘Moteurs Stunt Show’ where they learned about the ‘tricks of the trade’ when filming awe inspiring action sequences, including nail biting stunts, car chases and pyrotechnics. Of course, no trip to Paris would be complete without a trip to one of the most famous landmarks in the world, the Eiffel Tower! Chris Hopkins, Head of Curriculum at South Staffordshire College says “The trip to Paris was an exciting experience that provided our learners with some truly breathtaking memories as well as an insight into various creative careers. That they have come home so excited is fantastic. I’m sure the trip will provide them with inspiration for their studies for a long time to come.” South Staffordshire College offer a range of courses in creative subjects including Film and TV, Art and Design and many more. To find out more, or apply online in just 25 seconds, visit: www.southstaffs.ac.uk or call 0300 456 2424

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Digital Entrepreneur is proving independent app development is anything but ‘dinky’

Tue, 17/03/2015 - 11:15

One of South Staffordshire College’s digital entrepreneurs and resident ‘creative wizard’ has single-handedly launched an exciting new game on the Google Play Store. Entitled ‘Dinky Racing’, the game is a simple to play retro style racing game, inspired by classic games like Super Sprint and Micro Machines. Launched only a few days ago, the game, which is available as both a free download (lite version) and full 24 track version, is already proving to be a big hit with a 5 star rating! The brains behind the game, Senior Web Design Engineer Neil King, says “Back in the 80′s there were lots of ‘bedroom coders’ making money from writing computer games, then it became big business and the little guys didn’t get a look in. Now independent developers are making big money again with apps that have very low development costs so can be sold at such low prices that the big companies would lose money if they tried to compete. I like that. It opens up a whole host of new opportunities for aspiring IT entrepreneurs.” Jamie Smith, Director of Strategy and Infrastructure at South Staffordshire College agrees. “Software development has gone full circle in a truly fantastic way. I view it as a bit of a Renaissance of the industry. In recent times, some of the biggest success stories come not from huge corporations but by smaller groups of coders who work together collaboratively to produce some simply stunning results. Take Minecraft as an example. A game developed by just a few independent developers has fast become a multi-billion pound success story.” Neil’s enthusiasm is clear and when asked about the reasons for his success and what advice he’d give to other aspiring young developers, Neil says: “A successful career in IT or games development doesn’t have to mean big corporate offices in the US. There is no reason why someone sitting in their bedroom in Cannock can’t achieve just as positive a result. All you need is a blend of creative, unique ideas and the technical capabilities to actually bring them to life. I have always had a huge interest in digital development, and began my career by studying IT at the Cannock Campus of what is now South Staffordshire College. My qualification was the first real step into the career of my dreams, and I’m still just as passionate now as I was then.” If you want to follow in Neil’s footsteps, why not check out the range of IT courses on offer from South Staffordshire College by visiting: http://www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/information-technology/ Applications are still being accepted for this September and you can apply online in just 25 seconds!   Play ‘Dinky Racing’ for yourself… The Full version is available to purchase here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.worldbydesign.dinkyracingfull The FREE version with 6 tracks to try is available here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.worldbydesign.dinkyracingfree

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Horticulturalists win opportunity to showcase their skills at BBC Gardeners World 2015

Tue, 17/03/2015 - 10:40

Following a successful submission, the Horticulture Department at South Staffordshire College’s Rodbaston Campus are celebrating after being invited to take part in the ‘Beautiful Borders’ Exhibit at the BBC’s Gardener’s World Live from 11th – 14th June 2015. The event, which features the Royal Horticultural Society’s flower show, will be held at the Birmingham NEC and is a fantastic opportunity for Students and Staff at South Staffordshire College to demonstrate their creativity and talent to a range of high profile industry experts and the wider visiting public. To secure their position at the event, South Staffordshire College learners were asked to submit their design ideas, perspective drawings and an exhibit description for an inspiring border that reflects the theme of ‘Industrial Heritage of the West Midlands’. Having impressed the Gardener’s World Team, the result of their hard work has paid off. Sarah Davies, Head Gardener at South Staffordshire College says: “The staff and students are absolutely delighted to have this opportunity. Needless to say, it’s a great chance for them to showcase their work at one of the most prestigious events in the horticultural calendar. We don’t want to give away the details of our design too soon, but needless to say, after all of the planning and hard work that the students have put in, we’re confident it’s going to be a real showstopper. The design, which is inspired by the melting pot that was once Birmingham’s brass industry, will hopefully set visitors imaginations alight.” Second Year, Level 3 Horticulture Student Amy Harper has been a key driving force behind the project. Her demonstrable commitment follows on from the success of an exhibition for which she was responsible last year at Tatton Park Flower Show, for which she was awarded a Royal Horticultural Society Commendation. To find out more about the show, or to find information about booking tickets, visit www.bbcgardenersworldlive.com To find out more about studying Horticulture at South Staffordshire college visit www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/horticulture/ or call 0300 456 2424

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Business Students Raise Money for Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children

Thu, 12/03/2015 - 10:58

Level 2 Business Students and overseas learners from South Staffordshire College have raised an impressive £365.55 for Charity ‘Newlife’ following a jewellery sale. Newlife, foundation for disabled children, were thrilled with the donation and have contacted the students in question to tell them how their gift has helped improve the life of a disabled child by providing him with a specialist buggy. The charity said “Every day, we are receiving applications from families who are struggling to get the equipment they need. Without your help, and the help of our supporters, more children would suffer. Supporting Newlife really does change lives, so thank you again…” South Staffordshire College Business Tutor Kim Langdell said “This is the second year that our students have raised money for Newlife. We’re delighted to have been able to help make a difference to the lives of children with a disability and their families. As well as being a fantastic way to help a worthwhile charity, the jewellery sale was also a great opportunity for our business learners to have a ‘real world’ chance to enhance their learning and contribute to their visual merchandising and project management units.” In addition to Charity fundraisers, Business learners at South Staffordshire College, take part in a huge range of activities throughout the year that contribute to their studies, including conducting research projects for National Businesses and attending workshops with guest speakers from businesses such as Alton Towers. To find out more about studying business at South Staffordshire college visit: http://www.southstaffs.ac.uk/courses/business-management/ or call 0300 456 2424

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