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Work placements celebrated by students and employers

Posted: 14 June 2024

Employers have been formally recognised for their contribution to equipping students at West Nottinghamshire College with the skills and experience to pursue their career ambitions.

A celebration event at the college’s Derby Road campus saw representatives from businesses and charities presented with certificates for the vital role they play in ensuring students can take their learning out of the classroom or workshop and into the world of work.

Organised by the college’s work placement officers, the event celebrated employers’ commitment to provide young people with a wide range of industry opportunities during their studies, while applauding those who had nurtured and guided them.

Meanwhile, students were congratulated by their host employers for successfully putting their skills into practice on their placements, before receiving certificates for their achievements.

Local employers consistently support students with enhancing their employability and technical skills in a work setting, where learners are supported, mentored and provided with feedback on their performance.

All students are required to undertake a work or industry placement as part of their study programme. This requirement has been further expanded with the introduction of T-Levels, which see student having to complete a 45-day industry placement with an employer during their two-year course, comprising practical and knowledge-based learning built around a technical qualification.

Natalie Senior, work placement lead co-ordinator, said: “With the backing of employers, our students gain essential on-the-job skills and experiences needed to pursue their next steps after college, whether going to university, or starting an apprenticeship or skilled employment in their chosen field.

“Our expansion of T-Level subjects means these relationships are ever more important to ensure students gain in-depth industry knowledge and the best possible springboard to high-quality careers during their time with us.

“The celebration event was a great opportunity to commend students and thank those employers who supported them in providing such meaningful and vocationally-relevant placements.

“The wonderful comments from everyone who attended confirms how beneficial the work placement programme is, and further strengthens the trusting and positive relationships built up between the college and the business community in Mansfield, Ashfield and beyond.”

Employers at the event included Mansfield Town Community Trust, Frasers Group, Thoresby Hall Hotel and Spa, Go Active Falconry, Mansfield Wildlife Rescue, Currys, Mansfield Building Society, DoorCerts, NTU Mansfield, Takeover Radio, Pretty Sins, Sherwood Forest Hospitals Trust, A2R Electrical, and Firesec Installations.

Before the presentations in the college’s Refined restaurant, guests were treated to a performance by musical theatre students followed by a buffet prepared and served by catering and hospitality students.

Cheryl Martins, who runs Mansfield Wildlife Rescue, has hosted animal care students since October 2022. Her relationship with the college began when she visited to give talks to students about the work of her charity, which led to learners attending work and industry placements at its premises in Pleasley Vale.

The charity usually hosts around 12 students at a time, across different days. They perform a wide range of tasks including feeding and watering the animals, cleaning out pens, hand-rearing newborns, examining wounds, giving oral medications, keeping the woodland clear of rubbish, checking on animals released into the wild, running the café and answering telephones.

She said: “We love having the students – they help us out massively. We couldn’t function without them.

“Once they’ve dealt with the animals on site, we give them additional roles such as working in the café. They absolutely love it.

“Attending a work placement gives students the confidence and the experience they need to move forward because the work is very hands-on.

“Some want to go to veterinary school after their studies, so learning things such as hand-rearing and administering medicine to sick animals will be of huge benefit to them.

“Many still come to help on a voluntary basis once they’ve finished their placements, which I’m very grateful for.”

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Richard Skelhorn
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Rebecca Howarth
Communications Officer

01623 900527
communications@wnc.ac.uk

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