The College Merthyr Tydfil is celebrating after being shortlisted for the Times Education Further Education College of the Year Award 2016.
The annual awards, which are open to all UK further education colleges, seek to recognise and reward the achievements of the very best further education providers in the UK.
The college has been shortlisted for the category of FE College of the Year in recognition of its outstanding achievements, high quality curriculum, excellent student outcomes and overall positive contribution to education and training for learners in Merthyr Tydfil.
Over the last two years, the college has not only achieved unprecedented academic successes but it has also significantly improved participation rates in learning across Merthyr Tydfil, increased progression rates on to higher education and made a significant and distinctive contribution to the local community, initiating a range of partnerships to drive forward skills development, community regeneration and economic growth.
The college is now at the centre of academic and business life across Merthyr Tydfil and the Heads of the Valleys region with excellent partnerships with local secondary schools, the local council, training providers and employers.
The college also offers outstanding student support and enrichment programmes that positively influence and enhance student experience, boosting skills and confidence and aspiring students to achieve their maximum potential. As testimony to this, it has received a number of external accolades and awards:
Principal John O’Shea commented “We are delighted to have been shortlisted for the FE College of the Year Award. We constantly strive to provide the best learning environment to enhance our students’ abilities, the very best pastoral care and support - and give them the confidence and skills they need to achieve their aspirations. Our successes to date show that our efforts are paying off. In 2015, we achieved an A level pass rate of 99% - putting us at the top of the list of FE colleges in Wales and Merthyr Tydfil the best performing local authority at A level in Wales” However, our high quality teaching and learning and success rates are only part of the picture. We have built up excellent partnerships with local schools, offering a range of exemplar and innovative programmes to help transition from school to college. We are also recognised as a beacon for employer engagement. An example of this includes our new Tenneco Walker Welding Suite which has been developed in collaboration with Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council, Tenneco Walker and local training provider Tydfil Training.”
The college, which is up against seven other institutions for the award, will find out if it has won at the TES Awards dinner to be held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane on the evening of Friday 22 April.
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