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Tutors from a college in Russia flew into the UK to visit Northampton College and see first-hand how students are benefiting from vocational courses.

The group of 15 Russian tutors, from the Korolev College for Building and Construction near Moscow, travelled more than 2,000 miles to find out more about the UK college system and to see how Northampton College works with the construction sector to provide work-related courses, qualifications and apprenticeships.

Sasha Lipscombe, Managing Director of Global Vocational Skills, the company which organised the UK visit, said: “The aim of the trip was to provide visiting teaching staff with a better understanding of vocational training and education within the UK construction sector in the UK and our visit to Northampton really was a highlight.

“We hope this will be one of many visits to Northampton, as we look to forge and build strong relationships with educational establishments overseas.”

Patrick Leavey, Deputy Principal at Northampton College, added: “We were delighted to host this visit and to show tutors from Russia how we work with local businesses, the importance of our construction courses and how we put technology and digital strategy at the forefront of our teaching.”

Construction is an increasingly important sector for the UK and Northampton College is now recruiting and seeking experts from the construction engineering sector to join its teaching team. The College is holding two recruitment fairs in the New Year, both from 4pm to 7.30pm.

These are on Thursday, 4 January and Wednesday, 17 January at our Booth Lane Campus. Book your place here.

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A former Northampton College catering student will have the chance to represent the town in the Houses of Parliament having been put forward to defend Saffrons crown in the 2018 Tiffin Cup.

Mohammad Shajahan, aged 22, was taken on as an apprentice by the award-winning Castilian Street restaurant four years ago. He has gone on to work alongside executive chef Bodrul Islam and will now look to emulate his mentor’s success in the annual parliamentary search to find the nation’s best South Asian cuisine.

Saffron was named the winner of the 2016 competition, with Mr Islam’s dish of lime and ginger sea bass earning widespread acclaim from expert judges including TV chef Ainsley Harriott.

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Musical theatre students from Northampton College have ticked off the sort of gig most performers can only dream about... playing at Wembley Stadium.


A total of 28 year one and year two students took to the stage at the iconic sporting venue to perform at the national SME business awards, impressing guests at the lavish black tie event with a medley of songs from musicals Chicago and Rent.

Student Samantha O’Neill said: “It’s amazing to have performed at Wembley in just my second year. We have been rehearsing these particular pieces since October between other shows, so we were really confident and knew our stuff.”

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Each year, TruckEast continues to invest in its apprentices and build the workforce of the future. This year, they've taken it one step further with their recent donation to Northampton College - an R450 Topline Scania.

Committed to creating opportunities in the industry, the drive behind the donation is to open new doors for existing students and encourage more interest in HGV apprenticeships.

“Getting the younger generation interested in our industry today is a challenge across all business areas, so we believe opportunities like this are crucial to attracting new talent,” comments Regional Aftersales Director, Graham Broughton. “We are proud to present the college and students with a modern - day vehicle to advance their skills and see this donation as a n investment into not only the future of the college but of our own business as well . With the addition of this truck, Northampton College will continue to develop apprentices and therefore increase the number of qualified technicians with in the region,” he continues.

Donated to the Motor Vehicle and Logistics workshop, the Scania R - Cab will become part of the core equipment used within the IMI Level 2 and 3 motor vehicle maintenance and repair apprenticeship. The truck, given a new lease of life, will be used every week as a training vehicle in various formats including diagnostics and general routine maintenance. Currently enrolled on the course are 26 HGV apprentices across the three years, who will get hands - on experience on a fully functional truck, similar to those they will experience in their day - to - day work environments.

“Technology within the industry is accelerating at a rapid speed and it's important that the apprentices continue to get their hands on modern equipment with the up - to date systems they’ll experience back in their own workshops”, states Mr Broughton.

Principal of Northampton College, Pat Brennan-Barrett, said: “The College plays an important part in driving the economy and a vital role in engineering and logistics. To have an employer such as TruckEast to generously donate a truck, gives us the kudos in the further education sector to raise aspirations for all our students in enabling their careers. We are exceedingly grateful to all the staff at TruckEast and want to thank them for this donation to the Motor Vehicle and Logistics workshops."

TruckEast currently have six first year apprentice technicians enrolled at Northampton College, where the students attend once every six weeks for the theory element of their apprenticeship. As additional support to their development they are each assigned a mentor back at their respective workshops who act as a guide throughout the programme. The combination of both practical and theoretical training that the apprentices receive is a crucial part of their journey; one which allows them to make the most out of their potential – both professionally and personally.

With their own apprentices enrolled on the programme, TruckEast are going to continue to work closely with Northampton College by offering opportunities to young people in the region and building the future, together.

awards ceremony 2017

A teenager with Asperger’s syndrome has won a top award having become the first Supported Learning student at Northampton College to progress directly onto a Level 3 course.

Liam Hargreaves-Playford was honoured at the college’s annual awards ceremony – which saw dozens of students celebrated for their academic achievements over the past 12 months.

The 19-year-old from Moulton was frustrated by previous experiences of education when he arrived at Booth Lane but has thrived in his new surroundings and is now studying sports development and coaching.

A stunning tile mural has been unveiled at Northampton College’s Daventry campus to mark the building’s first birthday.

daventry tile murial revealThe display was revealed as part of an Open Event held at the campus on Tuesday, November 21, designed to help prospective students find out more about college life and the courses available to them.

Principal Pat Brennan-Barrett said: “This mural is a true collaboration of creativity, made up of hundreds of individually designed tiles, and is a fitting way to celebrate the first birthday of our state-of-the-art new campus.

“It’s a brilliant piece of work – made by students, staff, local businesses and members of the community.

“We are hugely grateful to everyone who has played their part and contributed not only to the mural but have also made the last 12 months so special for all of us at Daventry.”

A commemorative mural is being launched and unveiled at Daventry Campus on Tuesday (21st November) – part of the college’s one-year birthday celebrations.

Former Northampton College student Kathryn Holmes returned to Booth Lane to give catering students an exclusive insight into what goes on during a food safety inspection.

kathryn holmesNow working as a trainee environmental health officer for Birmingham City Council during a ‘sandwich year’ as part of a degree at the University of Wolverhampton, Kathryn returned to her roots to talk to the current students about the importance of food hygiene and explaining the process of inspectors’ visits.

She said: “It was good to be back. It felt strange to be walking back up to the main entrance again after two years away but I really enjoyed it. The students were great and really got involved, asking lots of questions and taking a real interest.

“While I enjoyed learning kitchen skills during my college course I didn’t want to work in kitchens so I’ve taken a different route. I love my job now and I’m keen to explain to the students what they can expect to happen when inspectors visit their premises in the future.

“Chefs are always looking for shortcuts and ways of becoming more efficient but it’s vital they don’t compromise on safety, particularly when public health is at stake.”

Jack Hunt, from Northampton College’s Supported Learning team, has played a key role in helping England Deaf Rugby to a 3-0 series whitewash over the All Blacks.

jack hunt 1The 24-year-old, who has worked at Booth Lane for the last three years, played as a second row forward in the three-game international series, coming off the bench in the first two games and starting the final encounter on Sunday.

Jack said: “The series was a great experience with some very tough games. It was pretty intense, with three games in eight days, so to get three wins against a very strong New Zealand side was a really good effort.

“All of the games were very competitive and there was a strong rapport between both teams. There was a lot of respect from both camps and we all got on well. Seeing them perform the closing ‘haka’ was a real privilege.”

Jack has now won eight full England Deaf Rugby caps since teaming up with the squad at the age of 17.

The principal of Northampton College has called on the Government to review its funding allocation for further education and invest in the workforce of the future.

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A group of Level 3 students have been working with the team at the Royal & Derngate, helping with the make-up for Northampton Musical Theatre Company’s production of Wizard of Oz.

cancer lunchFamilies of children receiving treatment for cancer at Northampton General Hospital have got together to share their stories and support each other with helpful hints and tips at a special lunch held at Northampton College.

The event, organised by Northampton General Hospital and sponsored by the Leon Barwell Trust, saw more than a dozen families affected by cancer invited to a lunch at the college’s Booth Lane campus, along with entertainment from Mr Banana Brain.

Parents were given the chance to meet others going through the same experience, talk about what they are going through and discuss the ways they deal with the situation day-in, day-out whilst children and siblings could play and enjoy an afternoon of socialising, fun and entertainment.

neil tobin and dan walker ntar visitStudents from Northampton College have been given the opportunity to earn a ‘fast-track’ progression to a leading apprenticeship programme as part of National Rail Week.

The National Training Academy for Rail (NTAR), based in Kings Heath, will offer one student from the college’s engineering course the chance to earn a place on the Siemens Rail Systems Rail Engineering apprenticeship scheme, giving them the chance to work for one of the world’s leading engineering companies.

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A three day trip to an adventure centre has given Northampton College students the chance to get out of their comfort zone and boost their confidence with a host of team-building activities.

The trip, arranged as part of the National Citizen Service (NCS), saw dozens of students head to Liddington in Wiltshire where they took part in activities such as raft-building, trapeze and a giant swing.

NCS team leader Parmilla Begum said: “This is the eighth project I’ve been involved with and every time I love it, it’s amazing. The change in young people is incredible. They are all very nervous at the start but by the end they are all excited and ready to go and help out in the community.”

darren stawarz apprentice of the year


An aspiring railway engineer from Northampton College is firmly on track for future success having been named the regional winner of the National Apprenticeship Awards.

Darren Stawarz, a mature student who is currently completing an NVQ at Booth Lane while working as a project engineer at Knorr-Bremse RailServices in Wolverton, was named the East Midlands winner in the Higher or Degree Apprentice category.

Having fought off the challenge of more than 800 entrants, Darren will now progress to the national finals of the awards – which showcase the diverse range of sectors engaged with apprenticeships and celebrate outstanding apprentices and employers.

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Forward thinking students planning for life after their GCSEs are being encouraged to attend Northampton College’s Open Events.


The first of these events will take place on Wednesday, 8 November from 5pm - 7.30pm at the College’s Booth Lane and Lower Mounts campuses.

Principal Pat Brennan-Barrett said: “While our prospectus and website is packed with information and advice there really is no replacement for seeing Northampton College for yourself.

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Staff from businesses across Northamptonshire have ‘graduated’ from a series of professional courses run by Northampton College to help boost skills in the workplace.

The Chartered Institute of Professional Development (CIPD) and Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) courses have been run at the college’s Lower Mounts campus.

A graduation ceremony was held to honour all those who completed courses in subjects including HR and management & leadership.

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Three Northampton College students have secured Supported Learning Internships with Northamptonshire Highways, giving them the chance to experience the world of work while continuing their studies.

Tom Mortimer, Waqar Khalid and Derrie Underwood have all been selected to take part in the internship programme and will have the opportunity to work alongside highways teams from KierWSP.

The interns will start in October and will work two days a week, with the rest of the week spent at college as part of an Entry Level 3 Award in Employability Skills.

High-achieving students helped record a two per cent rise in top grades at Northampton College – bucking the national trend of an overall dip in results.

jasmine bealOverall, the College achieved a 97 per cent pass rate, with over 2,000 students sitting exams in science, maths and English, with a number of students achieving the highest possible grade of 9 – the first time the new grading system has been used.


Pat Brennan-Barrett, Principal said: “We are delighted that our results in maths and English continue to improve in spite of changes to the grading system and the more challenging national environment. Passing these exams in particular is vital for future progression and our teachers have high expectations of all our students to achieve the highest possible grades.”

Among the standout students were:

Jasmine Beal, 25, passed her maths GCSE on the seventh attempt after achieving six D grades on previous attempts at school, college and even while she was at university. Having graduated in history from Oxford Brookes University, Jasmine knew she needed to pass her maths exam in order to enrol on a PGCE and become a history teacher. Jasmine overcame the odds after she was unexpectedly hospitalised in the middle of the exams. She managed to successfully achieve her grade 4 despite taking the new, tougher maths paper.

The first Northampton College students to ever obtain A* grades at A Level have helped the college to secure a record-breaking set of exam results.

chris hornAround 120 students took more than 350 exams within the A Level Academy at Northampton College. A 98 per cent pass rate at A2 was achieved. Students achieved a 100 per cent pass rate for 13 subjects including English, maths, chemistry, art and geography. The percentage of high grades (A*-C) was 73% per cent. The proportion of high grades has increased by 32% since last year. More than two fifths of grades were A*s, As and Bs. These results will ensure that most students are able to secure places at their first choice of university.

Two students, Chris Horn and Abigail Harvey, achieved three A* stars between them for biology, maths and creative writing.

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Students at Northampton College have helped raise £1,500 for a county charity – with the money earmarked to help young people who look after their parents or grandparents.

Proceeds from ticket sales and programmes sold at end-of-year shows by musical theatre and arts students helped raise the huge total for Northamptonshire Carers.

The donation will be used to help fund a range of activities for young carers, such as workshops or respite sessions.
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Global engineering giant Siemens has revealed it is ‘vital’ to keep feeding its talent pipeline with the best problem solvers from Northampton College as bosses look to plug the skills gap hitting the industry.

The commitment to apprenticeship schemes comes on the back of two Northampton College students winning the chance to spend time on work experience at Siemens base at the National Training Academy for Rail (NTAR) in Kings Heath, Northampton.

Level 3 Mechanical Engineering students Lewis Henry, aged 19, and 17-year-old William Dunkley will have the opportunity to impress managers at the pioneering facility and get fast-tracked to the apprenticeship assessment centre – where they can secure a permanent role working on the latest technology being rolled out across the railways.

dancersDance students from Northampton College will be showing off their moves having secured places at some of the country’s leading stage schools.

Kane Walcott and Cassie Dorrofield will be heading to London Studios Centre to study a BA (Hons) degree in Theatre Dance, while Kymara Williams has secured a place at the prestigious Bird College to study a Diploma in Professional Musical Theatre.

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A Northampton College student has been given the chance to impress bosses at the F1 world champions having landed a week’s work experience for being crowned Student of the Year.

Mechanical engineering student James Collins will get the opportunity to work alongside some of the industry’s brightest brains at Mercedes’ Brixworth base this summer, and will also be fast-tracked onto their apprenticeship selection programme early next year.

The award vindicates the 28-year-old’s decision to leave his job as a petrol station supervisor and follow his dream of working in engineering.

musical theatre progressionMusical Theatre students from Northampton College hope to swap Booth Lane for Broadway having secured places at some of the country’s leading stage schools.

A total of nine Level Three students are now set for the big time – following in the footsteps of some of the biggest stars of stage and screen.

The group will take their places at specialist stage schools across the country and all said their time at Northampton College helped prepare them for their future career.

daventry awards 2017

The first intake of students at Northampton College’s new-look Daventry Campus have been honoured for their hard work and dedication at an awards ceremony.

More than 400 people, including students, their families and a host of VIP guests, attended the ceremony at the new multi-million pound campus in Badby Road West, Daventry On Thursday, June 22.

Best Overall Progress award went to Kurdish student Stira Haj Ibhrahim, who came to England from Syria with her husband eight years ago.

When she first came to England, Stira couldn’t speak any English and didn’t even dare to answer her front door for the first six months. Eventually she developed the courage to join the College and enrolled on a course in English for speakers of other languages. She was inspired to learn words and phrases by reading everything she could get her hands on and watching children’s TV with her young child.

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From TV adverts for chocolate biscuits and packets of crisps to thought-provoking pieces tackling subjects such as terrorism and teenage angst, Northampton College students were honoured for their creativity at a glittering awards ceremony.

BTEC Creative Media students saw their work go on show at Booth Lane as part of an exhibition attended by staff and parents ahead of the BMAs – an annual awards ceremony celebrating the students’ dedication and creativity over the past year.

Awards were handed out in categories including Best Music Video, Best Soundtrack, Best Short Film, Best Poster, Best Double Page Spread and Best TV Advert.

he manNorthampton College has been given a ‘Silver’ award for the quality of its Higher Education teaching, putting it above many leading universities in the rankings.

The Teaching Excellence Framework was introduced two years ago to measure Higher Education providers in terms of quality of experience for students.

It uses a series of metrics including success rates, student satisfaction, progression to employment and resources. Providers are given a rating of either Gold, Silver or Bronze.

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The cream of Northampton College catering students came to the top at an annual awards ceremony honouring Booth Lane’s best bakers.

A glittering gala dinner, prepared and served by the students themselves, saw 12 aspiring chefs handed trophies for their hard work over the past academic year.

Among the winners was Aimee Bush, who was named Best First Year Catering Student in a category sponsored by Silverstone– which has teamed up with the college to offer students the chance to experience life in the fast-paced world of the Grand Prix circuit’s kitchens.

A campaign by the Reading Agency to get people reading has seen more than 170 people at Northampton College discover the joy of books, with some students even becoming published authors themselves.

The Reading Ahead scheme encourages people to read a minimum of six items and share their thoughts on what they have read. It is part of a national drive to improve literacy and encourage people to use libraries.

The Northampton College library has been awarded a gold award for its completion rates as part of the scheme and more than 50 students who took part were honoured at a ceremony attended by the Mayor of Northampton, Councillor Gareth Eales and local author Sue Bentley.

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Two Northampton College musical theatre students took to the stage at a lavish awards dinner in Liverpool to help celebrate the achievements of contact lens professionals from around the world.

Adrianne Langley and Kyra Derviller-Adams, who both study Musical Theatre at the College’s Booth Lane campus, performed as part of the British Contact Lens Association’s 40th anniversary celebrations.

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Northamptonshire Summer SENDsation 2017 - Northampton College (Sunday,11 June from 12pm - 4pm)

Volunteers from the Northants Parent Forum Group (NPFG) have received over £7,000 to support their fun-day this weekend. The event, known as ‘Summer SENDsation,’ promises to be a unique blend of entertainment, information, and activities for children and young people aged 0-25 with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and their families.

Held at Northampton College’s Booth Lane Campus, the event has been funded by the Northamptonshire Community Foundation, the Cooperative and the NPFG itself. Signage, printing, and entertainment is proudly sponsored by local organisations - the Kier Group, Sends4Dad, Sight & Sound Technology Ltd, Sports4Fitness CIC, the Teamwork Trust, and Unison Northamptonshire.

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Prospective students keen to have a look around Northampton College can enjoy a slice of summer with an open air barbeque taking centre stage at a special preview evening.

The open event will take place from 5pm to 7.30pm on Wednesday, 28 June and will give all those coming along the opportunity to see what it’s really like studying at Northampton College.

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A firefighter from Northampton has landed a starring role in a film being made by Northampton College to help recruit new students.

Mother of four Carla Williams, from Pitsford, who currently works as an on-call firefighter with Northamptonshire Fire & Rescue Service at Brixworth, donned her breathing apparatus as part of the re-enactment of a real fire in a student's house - which forms a central part of the film's storyline.

The student, whose story is due to be revealed later this summer when the film is launched, was unharmed in the fire and went on to successfully complete her course at the college in Booth Lane, Northampton.

A former catering student is on a fast track in her career after winning a worldwide competition and securing three promotions in just five years.

mary picMary Palecek, 25 secured a job as a commis chef at Sundial Group's Highgate House in Creaton as she came to the end of her Level 3 catering course at Northampton College. Five years on, and Mary has managed to work her way up through the kitchen to chef de parti, senior chef de parti and more recently sous chef, also moving to work at Sundial’s well-established Warwickshire conference venue, Woodside, during that time.

Her talent and strong work ethic sets her aside in the kitchen and her head chef was so impressed he even entered her into the junior category of a celebrated international catering challenge – Global Copper Skillet Competition – where she scooped the winning title.

Mary said, “Winning the competition has been a highlight of my career so far. I had heard about it but never felt confident enough to put myself forward. I have always been keen to learn new skills and cooking is my passion but to enter a global competition like that can be a bit daunting. I am not a nervous person but it was a scary prospect. I went in with the mind-set of getting the experience rather than winning and it paid off because I actually beat everyone to the top.”

Mary travelled to UCLA Meyer & Renee Luskin Conference Center in Los Angeles to compete. She was up against chefs from IACC Americas, Australia-Asia-Pacific and European member venues but it was her dish of sautéed courgette and aubergine, poached sea bass, pan fried sirloin, red pepper, tomato and coriander salsa, heritage carrots and caramelised shallots that wowed the judges.

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Some of the biggest chefs in Northampton are coming together to stage a one-off binquet at Northampton College – with diners treated to a slap-up meal made of food destined for the rubbish dump.

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Students from BTEC level three years one and two Creative Media Production will be showcasing the incredible work they have produced over the past year at The BMAs - the annual event to celebrate the achievements of students on the course.

Aspiring tattooists can get ‘thinking about inking’ thanks to a new course launched by Northampton College to inspire the next generation of body artists.

stuart rolls tattoo designThe Level 2 Illustration and Tattoo Design course has been designed to equip students with the skills they need to build a portfolio of eye-catching designs and prepare them for a career in an industry that has recently enjoyed a surge in popularity.

Latest research has estimated that one in five people in the UK has a tattoo and this figure rises to one in three for young adults.

Our new Daventry Campus played host to BBC Radio Northampton as Helen Blaby broadcast live from Badby Road West as part of the annual Big Health Check event.

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Members of the public were invited in to try their hand at a range of sports including kurling, Nordic walking and boccia while a variety of stands were available giving more information about subjects such as physiotherapy, diabetes and rural wellbeing.

Northampton College has been unveiled as an official sponsor of the 2017 Carlsberg UK Northamptonshire Food and Drink Awards.

250The awards are aimed at celebrating all that is great about local produce and drink, recognising excellence within the county’s dining venues and rewarding those who work so hard within the culinary sector.

The college will be sponsoring the Great Service award, won last year by the Red Lion in East Haddon – owned by former college catering student Joe Buckley.

Employing an apprentice is an opportunity to invest in your workforce and grow your business – with employers in Northampton urged to reconsider their recruitment policy.

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 Businesses across the county attended a workshop staged by Northampton College to help explain the new Apprenticeship Levy, which comes into force next week.

Employers with an annual pay bill of more than £3million will be required to pay a levy of 0.5 per cent that will fund apprenticeships.

The aim of the levy is to increase the investment in training by UK employers through apprenticeships, making it a long-term solution to support growth and commitment from businesses.

James Whybrow, assistant principal of Northampton College, said: “Getting apprentices involved in your company can revolutionise the business. It gives you the opportunity to shape your workforce for the future and really ingrain people in your company’s culture.

“By investing in people and giving them the chance to progress through the ranks you are encouraging loyalty and promoting innovation.

“The new Apprenticeship Levy is there to benefit companies both large and small, it gives employers the chance to create new jobs and enjoy the long-term benefits of an engaged and enthusiastic workforce.”

A class of Level 3 Art and Design students from Northampton College have created a series of paintings and drawings which they have donated to Northampton General Hospital.

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The spring-inspired artwork will brighten up the walls of waiting rooms so families can have something visually appealing to look at during their visits.

Each painting shows a different type of spring flower in a variety of different styles using different materials such as paint, pastel, pen and ink.

Northampton College has teamed up with top businesses experts and The University of Northampton to host a free workshop for local employers to learn about the new Apprenticeship Levy.

1037 50536The levy, which comes into effect on 6 April 2017, requires all UK employers with a pay bill of over £3 million each year to invest in apprenticeships.

With first payments due to be taken through the PAYE system in May, Northamptonshire employers will have chance to find out exactly how the levy will affect their business during the College’s workshop at John Lewis’ Grange Park depot on Thursday, 30 March.

Northampton College has partnered with levy-payer John Lewis, accountancy specialists Grant Thornton, legal experts Howes Percival, and The University of Northampton to stage the event, which will include a number of keynote speakers and a question and answers session.

Oil painting artist Michael Piper is putting his own stamp on the new multi-million pound Northampton College Daventry Campus, joining students, staff and local businesses to help create a giant commemorative mural.

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The mural, which will be unveiled later this year, will be made up of hundreds of individually designed tiles, and Michael has been using his own creative talent to craft a tile of his own design.

Visiting the new campus, the local artist took the opportunity to spend time with art students, offering career and technique advice.

Young people looking for the chance to ‘earn while they learn’ can pick up tips from employers and find out more about apprenticeships available with Northampton College.

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A total of 1,136 students successfully completed an apprenticeship with Northampton College in 2015-16 and employers such as Opus Energy and Novacroft will be on hand at the National Apprenticeship Show in Milton Keynes next week to explain more about how their apprentices are working their way up the career ladder.

Northampton College is a headline sponsor of the show and will be giving all those attending the opportunity to discover the benefits of signing up for an apprenticeship, combining traditional classroom-style learning with ‘on-the-job’ workplace training.

The number of students studying business at Northampton College has more than doubled in two years, with more people than ever before interested in setting up their own company.

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Latest figures have revealed a total of 296 people applied for the College’s Level 3 BTEC in Business in 2016, compared to 199 the year before and 117 in 2014.

And 2017 looks like being even more popular, with 92 people having already applied for courses starting this September, compared to just 37 at the same stage last year.

The figures reflect the growing entrepreneurial spirit in Northampton, with the town recently highlighted as one of the best towns in the country to start your own business and the 2016 Centre for Cities report ranking it as the best place outside London for start-ups.

Students looking for a career in the construction industry have been given the chance to ‘build a better future’ thanks to a pioneering new alliance.

university build 2The partnership between Northampton College, The University of Northampton and a host of companies working on the new Waterside campus project will see students given the opportunity to spend time working on the development and transferring the skills they learn in the classroom into a ‘real-world’ setting.

More than 50 electrical engineering students will be involved in the year-long scheme, each spending a week working on-site with specialist contractors such as Bowmer & Kirkland and Derry Building Services.

Prospective students and their parents will be given the chance to ‘have-a-go’ at Skills Fest 2017 – an open event showcasing the courses on offer at Northampton College.

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A range of hands-on workshops, featuring everything from beauty tips and cupcake design to fixing cars and animating video games, will be available during the event on Saturday, March 11.

The workshops will give anyone interested in studying at Northampton College the opportunity to find out more about specific courses, meet the teachers and familiarize themselves with the facilities. Parents will also have the chance to come along and learn more about all aspects of college life.

Businesses, VIPs, students, staff and local artists are being invited to put their own stamp on the new multi-million pound Daventry Campus, as plans for a giant commemorative mural continue to take shape.

jasmin haines liam robertson smiling students unveil tiles resized jpegThe mural, which will be made up of hundreds of individually designed tiles, will be in development at the official launch and open day of Northampton College’s new Daventry Campus on Tuesday, February 7.

College staff and students have already been designing their own tiles and guests at the launch event will be invited to get creative and play their part in the giant mural, which will take centre stage inside the new campus’ reception.

Sam Cope, Photography tutor and Visual Arts Technician, said: “Our students are already hard at work getting creative and we would love our guests and VIPs to also get involved. You don’t need to be a skilled artist or sculptor, everyone is simply free to create something that will become part of the College for many years to come.”

As part of their project called ‘Surfaces’ art and design students have been getting ready for the launch event by creating colourful tiles that incorporate different techniques and materials such as string, clay tools and bubble-wrap to create indents into the clay with different textures and feels.
Catering students from Northampton College will be given the chance to cook at one of the biggest hospitality venues in the country as part of a new partnership with Silverstone Circuits.

northampton college students help in the kitchenA cohort of 14 students will carry out a work experience programme at the home of the Formula 1 British Grand Prix, giving them the opportunity to experience life in the fast lane with thousands of diners enjoying corporate hospitality at the venue throughout the year.

The new partnership, which could eventually see students cooking at the British Grand Prix itself, has been pioneered by Silverstone head chef Dean Hoddle, a former Northampton College student whose son, Adam, is currently studying at Booth Lane.
Two aspiring engineers from Northampton College have picked up top awards for their work during an apprenticeship with Ilmor Engineering.

james flanniganJames Trethewy and James Flannigan landed the awards for their hard work and dedication shown throughout the apprenticeship programme with Brixworth-based Ilmor which designs, manufactures, builds and tests motor racing engines.

At the college’s annual awards ceremony, James Trethewy picked up the award for most determind student, sponsored by John Lewis, while James Flannigan was named Apprentice of the Year in Ilmor’s own internal awards.

Tony Thain, quality manager at Ilmor Engineering, said: “James Flannigan has been a breath of fresh air within the quality department and has become a valuable member of the team showing great enthusiasm and a willingness to learn.

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Catering student Viktorija enjoyed a taste of life in the kitchens of three Michelin starred restaurants on the back of her time at Northampton College. Having been named the winner...

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