Last month, I was fortunate enough to win an award at the college awards ceremony for achievement within my Apprenticeship. The evening was a true reminder of not only what I have accomplished this year, but what this college, and other further education facilities like it mean to my community, as well as my generation.
The more I think about it, this generation are more diverse than any other. We refuse to sit still and accept the paths that lie ahead of us. Instead, we use initiative to pave new paths, which we then follow into whatever future we choose.
Colleges embrace this initiative by significantly expanding the local offer. This is an understated, yet incredibly powerful thing. Without the option of further education, students would be pigeonholed into programmes that may not suit them perfectly. Just the existence of colleges as an alternative further education option broadens the horizons of so many people, whether it be 16 year olds looking to progress, or those looking for a change in direction.
Colleges like ours allow students like me to pick from a variety of study options in a plethora of curriculum areas, from GCSEs to BTECs, Higher Education to Apprenticeships. For me personally, college has been an opportunity to kick start my career as an apprentice after realising university wasn’t right for me. This was undoubtedly a turning point in my life, and one that I will forever be indebted to Northampton College for.
Colleges like ours understand that each student is different and may require different services – additional support, careers guidance, extra tuition and even enrichment opportunities.
The future is a dark place to imagine without choices, and sixth form is just one of a whole host of options available to students.
Colleges are, simply put, a manifestation of diversity within communities and generations.
Surely this is as good a reason as any to love our colleges?
The petition below needs to surpass 100,000 signatures to be considered for debate in Parliament. We need your support - please sign by clicking the link.