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Gower College Swansea wins at prestigious Further Education awards

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Gower College Swansea has won the apprenticeship programme of the year award at the 2021 Tes FE Awards, announced this evening in a virtual ceremony.

The Tes FE Awards, now in their 11th year, celebrate the outstanding aspects of the UK’s FE sector, applauding excellence and rewarding innovation.

The Tes Magazine and website is the most trusted source of education news and views in the UK. Tes runs these awards, alongside the Tes Schools Awards and the Tes Independent School Awards.

When international employer Tata Steel faced a shortage in science skills, Gower College Swansea solved the problem. The college not only developed a level 3 apprenticeship in laboratory and industrial science but went one step further, developing a level 4 higher apprenticeship in life-science industries.

The college worked hard to secure further progression for the pathway and reached an agreement with Swansea University to allow students to go on to the second year of their chemistry undergraduate degree programme – the first chemistry pathway of its kind in the UK. Today, Tata Steel and other major employers, such as Huntsman Corporation and Vale Europe, all benefit from the programme.

Gower College Swansea’s Tycoch campus (Image: Gower College Swansea)

Tes head of FE Julia Belgutay said: “Further education providers have excelled in what has been a truly challenging year, and each one of the amazing individuals, teams and institutions who have won a Tes FE Award tonight are testament to that. Our judges were so impressed with what teachers, support staff and leaders have managed to achieve this year. The whole FE sector should be proud of these winners and I want to congratulate all of them on a brilliant achievement.”

Gillian Keegan, the Minister for Apprenticeships and Skills, congratulated the award winners. She said: “To win an award is always an honour, but to win one in a year like the one we’ve just had is truly remarkable. FE will play a key role as we try to recover from the pandemic.”

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The Tes FE Awards were held virtually this year to comply with the ongoing coronavirus restrictions. In previous years the awards ceremony has been held at the Grosvenor Hotel, on London’s Park Lane.

(Lead image: Gower College Swansea)


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