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News and events

We aim to keep you up-to-date with the very latest Weston College news and events. Take a look below at what's going on at the College!

Got news you want to share with us? Email marketing@weston.ac.uk

Latest events at Weston College

Latest news and developments at Weston College

There is always so much going on across our various campuses and courses. Stay up to date on our latest news
Weston College staff accepting an apprenticeship award

Weston College proudly announces its outstanding performance in the recently released national apprenticeship success rates, positioning itself as a leading provider in the education sector. According to the latest data, Weston College has achieved a remarkable success rate of 68.1%, marking a significant increase of 3.5% compared to the previous year.

Barney Willis, Assistant Principal - Apprenticeship and Traineeship Operations, expressed his delight, stating, "The national success rates for apprenticeships were released yesterday, and Weston College performed excellently again this year compared to other apprenticeship providers. Our apprenticeship success this year has risen by 3.5% to 68.1%. National benchmarks are at 54.3%. We are now officially the best College in the south-west and the only one that has met the government’s minimum target of 67%!"

This achievement reaffirms Weston College's commitment to delivering high-quality apprenticeship programs that not only meet but exceed national standards. The College has garnered attention on multiple fronts:

  • Weston College ranks in the top 5 nationally when excluding smaller further education (FE) colleges with relatively low numbers of apprentices.
  • In a comparison against all provider types, including colleges and other institutions, Weston College secures a spot in the top 10 nationally. Notably, among colleges of similar or larger size, Weston College is unmatched in its success rate.
  • Within the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) area, Weston College stands out with a success rate of more than 10% higher than its closest competitors.

Weston College's consistent excellence in apprenticeship provision highlights its position as a beacon of educational excellence, supporting employers and empowering learners to thrive in their chosen fields and contributing to the region's economic growth.

Students holding certificates

Every year, University Centre Weston holds a photography competition, open to entries both in an international ‘open call’ and to entries from Weston College students. This year’s theme for photos to follow was around ‘Embrace’. This photography award is produced and organised by the BA Hons Photography & Visual Cultures students from UCW, with support from Royal Photographic Society. The awards were presented alongside the Dirigo International Student Film Festival at the Cube Microplex.  

Our student winner for this year was the very talented Lucy Kenchington, who is currently studying the UAL Level 3 Photography course. You can see her impressive work below. 

Boxer being punched

The runners up for the students category are below: 

Runner up - Tanya Fairall 

Runner up - Viktorija Chvirago 

 

We caught up with Lucy to get her reaction to her impressive win. Lucy said: "I was a little surprised when I discovered I had won the Embrace competition, especially when I found out how many other photographers had entered.  

“It was a very nice shock. I hope to have a career in photography one day and this feels like a positive first step. Not only did I gain some valuable work experience during the actual shoot, but I am also lucky enough that my photo has been published and displayed in galleries in Bristol and Weston which is great for publicity.”  

 

The award was also open to an international open call for submissions. The winner in this category was Farid Barari from Tehran, Iran for the incredible piece; Shoemaker!  

The runners up for the open category are as follows:  

Runner up - Amir Farhoud, Modernity Against Modernism, London, UK  

Runner up - Elaine Cristina Melo, The Miracle of innocence, Sao Paulo, Brazil 

Commended - Tony Jordan, Stroud, UK 

Fiona smiling at the camera on stage whilst holding her award

We proudly celebrate Fiona's remarkable tenure of over 31 years of continuous full-time service. Fiona, currently serving as College Registrar and Lead Safeguarding Officer, embarked on her journey with the College in a different role, starting as an Information Officer during a pivotal transition period.

Reflecting on her enduring commitment, Fiona expressed, "Quite simply, I feel that my job is not yet finished. The education sector is like sand dunes, constantly shifting with the winds of government initiatives and funding. Despite the challenges, I've never found the grass to be greener elsewhere."

Throughout her tenure, Fiona has been instrumental in numerous initiatives and achievements. Notably, she was elected to represent the further education sector on the original Metropolitan Police National Counter Terrorism Advisory Board, conducting research on radicalisation in coastal communities. Additionally, Fiona's unwavering dedication to supporting learners through safeguarding disclosures has been pivotal in guiding them toward brighter futures. 

When asked about the culture and atmosphere at Weston College, Fiona emphasized the institution's steadfast focus on learners and their individual journeys.

Fiona's dedication to students has been the foundation of her experience at Weston College. "Without learners, the College has no heartbeat," she noted, highlighting the pride she feels in seeing alumni succeed in various fields.

Regarding staff support and development, Fiona believes Weston College stands apart due to its culture of opportunity, optimism, and genuine encouragement. As a staff member, she emphasized the importance of seizing every opportunity and embracing discomfort as avenues for personal and professional growth.

In offering advice to new staff members, Fiona imparted three key principles: cherish time, embrace growth opportunities, and foster camaraderie with colleagues, who become like a second family. 

As Fiona's journey continues, we extend our deepest gratitude for her unwavering dedication and profound impact on the College and its community.

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One Message, Different Voices

Take a look at this powerful film made by the staff of Weston College to show how important it is for everyone from different backgrounds to be included. The film shares heartfelt stories and interviews with a diverse group of staff, showing how accepting different identities and backgrounds can make a big difference. Its purpose is to encourage viewers to think about their own biases and work towards making our community more welcoming to all. We invite everyone, regardless of their background, to join us and be a part of our journey toward a more inclusive future.

Halo workplace logo

Our workplace champions the right of staff to embrace all Afro-hairstyles. We acknowledge that Afro-textured hair is an important part of our Black employees’ racial, ethnic, cultural, and religious identities, and requires specific styling for hair health and maintenance. We celebrate Afro-textured hair worn in all styles including, but not limited to, afros, locs, twists, braids, cornrows, fades, hair straightened through the application of heat or chemicals, weaves, wigs, headscarves, and wraps. In this workplace, we recognise and celebrate our colleagues’ identities. We are a community built on an ethos of equality and respect where hair texture and style have no bearing on an employee's ability to succeed.