On 20th June, our Bordesley Green campus played host to the UK’s biggest and longest running skills competition, SkillBuild.
Delivered by CITB, this renowned competition covers a range of crafts including bricklaying, carpentry, joinery, painting and decorating, plastering and wall and floor tiling, attracting competitors and colleges from across the country.
Running for over 45 years, the SkillBuild sees the very best in construction talent compete against each other to be crowned the winner in their chose trade. Following this, winners will be invited to compete at the National SkillBuild Final at the NEC, Birmingham, and if successful here, they will be offered the chance to have a place on the WorldSkills UK team.
This year, we had a number of entrants into the competition and came away with a eight medals!
- Conna O’Toole, Carpentry, Senior – first place
- Jack Hull, Wall and Floor Tiling, Senior – first place
- Ryan Griffiths, Painting and Decorating, Senior – second place
- Joseph Parker, Joinery, Senior – second place
- Mohammad Orang, Carpentry, New Entrant – second place
- Mohammed Ramzan, Joinery, New Entrant – third place
- Curtis Green, Plastering, Senior – third place
- Suleman Sillah, Wall and Floor Tiling, New Entrant – third place
A number of school children also attended the event and took part in the 'Have a Go' activities the college had provided, all of which acted as an early introduction to construction trades.
South and City College's Deputy Director of Construction Crafts, Simon Winder, said of the event visitors "They were all amazed, and very impressed at what was on display, especially the quality of work that was being produced by all the competitors.”
A huge congratulations to all of our winners, all of the competitors and everyone involved with the event that helped make it a great success.
We are pleased to confirm that the College have retained the Customer Service Excellence Standard after an inspection took place at Hall Green and Bournville.
The standard aims to ensure that organisations provide services that are effective, efficient and equitable with the customer at the heart of everything they do, and thanks to the great efforts of our staff, we were able to preserve our fantastic achievement.
The inspector granted us with record 15 ‘Compliant Plus’ grades (the highest of any college).
Our praised strengths included:
- Student feedback
- Marketing and publicity
- Using the merger for continuous improvement/development
- IT and MIS systems.
Thank you to all who contributed during the inspection, and a special mention to Kay Snelson for her endless hours of hard work when producing a very impressive CSE submission.
Ryan Griffiths began his journey at South and City College on a supported learning ICT programme, which he did not enjoy. After some thought, he went on to join the Carousel Construction Course.
Thanks to changing courses, Ryan did not only find himself excelling in many trade areas, he began to like college again, in particular, painting and decorating. Due to his range of learning difficulties, such as Autism, ADHD, dyslexia and dyspraxia, Ryan’s learning posed many barriers, however, he has managed to overcome them with the help of student engagement alongside teaching staff.
Ryan is now on a Painting and Decorating Level 1 course, working at distinction level through all practical elements. Despite all the additional needs, he has successfully completed work experience and was entered for the Johnston’s Young Painter of the Year Competition at South Leicester College April 2017.
Painting and Decorating lecturer Matthew Wadron said: “Ryan’s work is outstanding, so much so, that he won first place and has now qualified to represent the college at this year’s Johnston’s painting and decorating national finals at the Ricoh Arena and represented the college at the Skillbuild West Midlands Regional Heats held at the Bordesley Green Campus on 20 June 2017. On the day, Ryan was promoted from the new entrant level to senior students, where he went on to gain second place, which is an absolutely fantastic achievement.
“The transformation this learner has made is fantastic.
"Both support staff and tutors are extremely overwhelmed and proud of his achievements so far this year and we will continue to nurture and push Ryan to his full potential as he continues his study with us.”
A charity event that took place Thursday, 8th June within IKEA, Dale End Birmingham raised £1,693 for the local charity, ‘Help Harry Help Others’. Shoppers were able to bid at auction for a variety of customised home furnishings and furniture created by fashion students from South and City College Birmingham.
The items on auction were part of the exhibition, ‘Art on the High Street’, which was located in The Square Shopping Centre, allowed fashion students to not only demonstrate their course skills, but also gave an opportunity to work with the iconic household brand IKEA. Dawn Lloyd, Unit Manager for IKEA Order & Collection Point commented, “We’re are absolutely delighted to have been able to sponsor the college with products for the students curriculum work and were over the moon to then be able to offer them for auction ,all in aid of ‘Help Harry Help Others’.
The auction evening that was open to the public saw a bidding war for a variety of items; an IKEA sofa embroidered by hand sold for nearly £400 and a simple set of customsied chair cushions reaching £50. Eileen Simons, Assistant Faculty Head for the college said, “As a college we always look to offer our students support within their chosen industry, providing them with experience in and out of the classroom. This project has been an excellent opportunity for our students to showcase their skills and gain real life experience and we are proud of their work and commitment they have shown during this time. The support we have had from IKEA and the Square Shopping Centre has been amazing and we're really pleased we've been involved in this initiative.
The money raised will help fund the local Cancer Charity efforts to further work towards a cure for Brain Cancer but also in helping children and their families who are affected by any Cancer, and the people who support them. Around 1,550 children are diagnosed with cancer each year in the UK, a quarter of them with brain tumors. The charity’s mission is to find a cure, but until then they want to make a difference wherever they can. Cushman & Wakefield General Manager of The Square Shopping Centre, Mark Dixon, said “Help Harry Help Others is an amazing local charity and we’re delighted that we were able to give our shoppers a chance to not only exhibit the work created by the college, but also own a piece for such a worthy cause.”
Georgie Moseley, Founder of Help Harry Help Others, “It’s an honour to accept a cheque for £1,693 which was raised through an event created by students. Whilst primarily we are a local Cancer Charity, we also inspire young people through Harry’s story and it was lovely to have children and young adults there who chose to support Harry.”
To find out more about the charity and how you can help raise money for HHHO, visit: www.hhho.org.uk
Following the enormous success of their Jobs Fairs last year, Protocol are pleased to confirm that they will be hitting the road once again with their 2017 Recruitment Roadshow.
Throughout May and June, the Protocol team will be heading out to cities across the UK including London, Leeds, Liverpool, and Newcastle – and the second stop is Birmingham, on the 8th June in at Birmingham City Library, Broad Street, between 2-7pm. Lecturers, Assessors, Learning Support Workers, Senior Managers and industry professionals who’d like to find out more about working in further education are all encouraged to attend.
Lisa Aldred, Candidate Attraction Manager at Protocol comments:
“We recruit for a vast variety of education jobs from teaching, SEN, learning support and lecturing through to invigilation, admin, MIS and management. Positions include sickness cover, temporary and permanent opportunities. These events are a fantastic way for us to catch up with existing candidates and register new faces.”
She continues: “Our free relaxed events will provide education professionals with the opportunity to speak to an experienced consultant, look for jobs and get advice, ahead of the new academic year.”
The agency will also be running free CV workshops throughout the day, providing tips and advice to help candidates fine tune their CV for the education sector.
Established in 1995, Protocol is the UK’s leading provider of flexible staffing to the Further Education sector, working with over 200 Further Education Colleges and 70 Private Training Providers, as well as Local Authorities and the Justice Sector. They help over 4,000 candidates nationwide find both temporary and permanent jobs every year, in which they deliver over 1 million hours of teaching and learning.
To find out more or to book a slot with a consultant visit www.protocol.co.uk/jobsfairs or call 0115 911 1222
A South & City College Birmingham manager has returned from a delegation to Bosnia-Herzegovina with a mission – to use the lessons from the worst atrocity on European soil since World War II to tackle the rise of hatred and intolerance in this country.
Alma Aganovic, Director of marketing and customer experience at South & City College Birmingham, joined other professionals in fields such as journalism, academia, arts and the public sector from across the country. The group visited Sarajevo to learn about the longest siege in modern warfare, Tuzla, to meet with an organisation working with the victims of mass rape, and Srebrenica, where 8,372 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were murdered in an act of genocide.
Originally from Bosnia herself, Alma reflected on the importance of these lessons for the UK: ‘We were in Bosnia when we heard about the tragic events in Manchester. I couldn’t help but draw parallels between Bosnia twenty-two years ago and Britain now. Bosnia was a peaceful country before the war and it is through the prejudice and hatred of a few that innocent lives of thousands were destroyed. And just as it could have been me in Bosnia, it could have been my daughter in Manchester. Both Srebrenica and Manchester are communities of strength, resilience and unity. We must learn lessons from the past to tackle hatred and intolerance wherever we see it.’
Everyone who joined the delegation has pledged to increase awareness of the Srebrenica genocide. Alma is hoping to develop a tutorial programme for students in further education to spread the message amongst young people.
‘Unfortunately, our young people don’t learn about Srebrenica at school and so the single greatest atrocity in Europe since the Second World War could easily be forgotten. With the rise of divisive politics across the world, it has never been more important to share the lessons learnt from Srebrenica and promote tolerance.’ Alma added.
Fashion students and staff from South and City College Birmingham have been custom making IKEA furniture, as part of a project commissioned by the Square Shopping Centre in Birmingham. Around 30 students from HND and Extended Diploma Level 3 courses have spent two weeks in a unit in the Shopping Centre, working as a team to design and customise the furniture and accessories that IKEA donated.
‘This has been an amazing project for students to get involved in. Having a live brief to work to is always a great experience for the students, but the association with such a well-respected high street brand and being based in a shopping centre working together as a team has been invaluable. They are developing industry skills as well as developing personally, helping to develop their employability skills for the future.’ Carmen Burkett, Fashion and Textiles lecturer, said.
The students chose a tropical theme for this project and they have been working on three scenes, which will stay on display at the Square Shopping Centre for a month before being moved to the IKEA store, where they will be auctioned off for charity on the 8th June.
IKEA store manager, Dawn Lloyd said: “we moved into the City centre back in August and had been really keen to get involved with community projects. The Square got in touch with us to let us know that South and City had an idea to customise some of our furniture. We thought it would be a great opportunity, so we donated some furniture and the Square found some space for the students to work in.
“This project is about supporting students to get into the workplace and helping them develop their portfolios so that different employers can see the work they’ve done, it is fantastic.”
If you're interested in a fashion course, click here.
Our very own Community Liaison Officer, Mohammad Zafran (Zaf) has been honoured at Muslim News Awards by the British Government for his selfless work in the UK.
The prestigious event took place at Marriot Hotel and was opened by Prime Minister, Teresa May, who congratulated the British Muslims for their contribution to this country. Zaf received the Imam wa Amal Special Recognition award for outstanding contribution to multi-faith and community.
Over 150,000 individuals were nominated for highly commended award but Zaf, as he is known to many was deservedly the recipient of this award for following the footsteps of a true humanitarian and engaging with all communities to ensure that the world is in a better place.
In light of recent horrific times, Zaf said: “I feel honoured to have received this award as a special role model for other British Muslims at a time when there is such negativity surrounding Islam and Muslims due to sickening actions by those who play no part to
Any religion. My message to everyone is show people how good you are by your actions and by showing them how good your character is and before anything else, you need to display that you are a good human being. We need to spread peace!”
A few days before this, Zaf was also presented with the West Midlands Police Diamonds Award in the Late Police Crime Commisioner Bob Jones Thank You Category for his outstanding work in the community and continuing to help others.
The West Midlands Police recognised Zaf for his engagement with over 17,000 youths to get them off the street, back into education/employment and away from crime, as well as heling over 6,000 young Asian women to continue in further education and employment after they were forced to quit education at the age of 15.
Zaf is doing various projects all across the City to tackle unemployment, knife crime and radicalisation.
Level 3 Music student, Kieron Lee has achieved musical success thanks to the Communication and Autism Team who came along to our Digbeth Campus.
The opportunity began when Kieron was interviewed by CAT TV, where singer/songwriter, Aaron Yorke approached him following a performance to ask if he wanted to be part of the ‘Building Bridges’ album in order to raise awareness of Autism, while proving that autistic people are just as good as original songwriters and artists.
After spending a few days in Worcestershire to record the song, Kieron made his way to the Hardrock Café, Mayfair, London for the albums launch. He said: “the experience was surreal, like living the dream, particularly because of what it was in aid for – you wouldn’t expect it to be this way.
“The red carpet was out and it was filled with so many people and press. On stage there was over one hundred cameras pointing towards me, it was so strange, especially walking past celebrities like it was a normal thing to do.
“Following the launch, I had the chance to perform on Sky TV’s Crissy B Show, a programme about mental health and have probably spent more time in London the past three months than I have in Birmingham with a separate project and through performing in East Croydon, Mayfair, Brixton and places I’ve never even heard of before. There is lots of travelling but it has all been worth it.”
Everyone who helped produce the album are on the autism spectrum, not only providing us with some fantastic music but with all of the promotion that has gone on thanks to the Anna Kennedy Charity in particular, so much awareness has been raised for this cause.
Kieron said: “If it wasn’t for the college, I wouldn’t be doing any of this. They have played a big part in pushing me in this album, especially the tutors who have all been very convincing – wherever you go, whatever you do, there is always someone supporting you.”
To buy the album, click on the following links:
To find out more about our music courses, please click here.
Check out Kieron's website by clicking here.
The annual 'Sir Doug Ellis OBE Apprenticeship Awards' evening was another resounding success for South and City College Birmingham - and it's Students and Apprentices.
This spectacular event was held once again at the prestigious Macdonald Burlington Hotel in Birmingham City Centre on Friday March 10th.
Deputy Principal Sardul Dhesi opened up proceedings with a welcome speech and went on to introduce our 'Master of Ceremonies' for the evening Tom Ross. Tom is an Ambassador for the College and 'ran the show' brilliantly in his normal flamboyant style.
Nearly 200 guests were seated in the Horton Suite - with Lord Mayor Cllr Carl Rice, Jason Wouhra of East End Foods and Errol Lawson, Inspirational speaker , launching the evening of celebration with some very inspiring speeches.
Business leaders , MP's and high flying Apprentices created an audience that showed passionate support for the Awards presentations throughout the night.
The evening came to a close with the charity raffle draw - which this year raised vital funds for 'Tiny Babies' The Big Appeal - a massive £1100 was raised with the main prize a pair of Turkish Airlines tickets to any of their worldwide destinations.
A massive thank you to all our sponsors and of course our very own Sir Doug Ellis OBE who through his generous financial support over the years to SCCB, helps to create this spectacular event of celebration AND of course has created many platforms of opportunity for our students at South and City College.
We are looking forward to 2018 already
West Midlands Police (WMP) recently launched an 80-place Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Apprenticeship programme and are keen to encourage local people to apply for available roles.
In partnership with South and City College, Bournville College and Job Centre Plus, a course was developed exclusively to support Job Centre Plus clients with application and interview techniques to gain access to PCSO jobs and a level 3 Customer Service Apprenticeship program with the force.
The programme engaged with candidates via Job Centre Plus to offer them the opportunity to join a three week pre-employment program. Initially over 60 candidates attended the assessment day, of which 13 candidates where successful and were invited to join the programme. On completion of the course each candidate was guaranteed a telephone interview, which was the first stage of the PCSO recruitment process.
Dawne Hay, Trainer said: “Working with West Midlands Police and designing and developing training to meet their specific customised specialist training was very interesting and challenging.
“As the tutor it was extremely rewarding to work with students who were so motivated and focused. It sounds like a cliché saying we went on a journey together, but we really did. Unemployment affects our confidence and to witness meeting them at the start of the programme and comparing the changes at the end of the course, it was clear to see a dramatic improvement of their personal and vocational development.”
The focus of the PCSO pre-employment course was customer service and communication skills which are key features of the job role. It was also important for the students to have an understanding of basic human behaviour, and whilst on the course, they learned how to tackle problems within the community, how to manage conflict and how to handle difficult situations.
Throughout the intensive, customised course, the students received a comprehensive presentation from the WMP Recruitment Manager and a visit and presentation from a PCSO to discuss the role and answer questions. JCP provided support, advice and guidance to the students, and worked on a one to one basis to ensure benefits were not affected by course attendance, that travel expenses were provided and that Job Centre appointments were re arranged and did not impact on attendance of the training course.
Students who successfully completed the pre-employment course were automatically invited to the telephone interview stage of the PCSO recruitment process, and if successful they would be invited to an assessment centre which includes a face-to-face competency based interview plus a case study activity. The final stages of the recruitment process includes the completion of vetting information, a medical and a fitness test.
The recruitment process is an intensive process and can take many months to complete before applicants can be offered a start date in the role.
During the different stages of the process, the college intends to support the Job Centre Plus students further by helping them to continue to improve their written English skills, which will be a valuable asset when working as a PCSO.
Jayne McCracken, Recruitment Manager at WMP said: “I am delighted that there has been so much interest in the PCSO role, and that local people have committed to a training course which will improve their chances of gaining employment as a PCSO. I witnessed first-hand the difference that
this programme has made to the participants' confidence levels and self-belief and look forward to working with some of the course participants in the future.”
Chris Fowler one of the candidates on the course said: “Before I was accepted onto this course I was working as a refuse collector.
“I attended the assessment and was very proud when I heard I had passed and been accepted for the course.
“I want to be a PCSO as I feel I can help make a difference in the community by keeping the public safe and building up important relationships. I hope to be a friendly face that the public feel they can approach.
“I will feel a more responsible person if I am accepted into the force and will be very proud of the career path I am starting.”
Working with Construction Youth Trust - a charity that helps young people in England and Wales into careers in construction - the group from Aston University Academy of Engineering and South & City College Birmingham have spent three days in the city on a discovery mission exploring all aspects of the construction sector providing a detailed understanding the range of roles available in the sector, Construction Youth Trust's Budding Brunels programme.
The group visited the site of 55 Colmore Row where Morgan Sindall is delivering a £30 million (€35 million) redevelopment for IM Properties which is transforming the building into 160,000 sq ft of space in the heart of the city.
On day one, the students, in four teams of five members, were assigned roles and guided around the development by a team of graduates from the contractor's project delivery teams.
Then, over the next two days, the newly appointed architects, project managers, quantity surveyors and structural engineers applied what they had learned to an imaginary brief to deliver a new building on the site of 55 Colmore Row. Drawing on their new knowledge of the roles, the students first prepared and then explained their proposals to an interview panel of sector experts.
Dave Kelly, Morgan Sindall's framework manager said, "The skills shortage facing UK construction companies is well publicised and as a business we take our responsibility seriously when it comes to highlighting the opportunities available. We do everything we can to provide real, meaningful opportunities for young men and women who want a career in construction.
"As signatories to the Birmingham Business Charter, we were only too happy to engage with Construction Youth Trust and their fantastic programme."
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