From education to employment

College Stars Shine at Student Awards

Katie Jones chosen by Mark Dacey, Chief Executive of NPTC Group of Colleges

Some of the brightest and most promising students in Wales have been recognised at NPTC Group of Colleges’ annual Student Awards ceremony held at Neath College.

The evening was a celebration of academic and personal success, with one student from each academic area crowned School Award Winner, and other special awards presented over the evening including Higher Education Student of the Year, Junior Apprentice of the Year and Adult Learner of the Year.

The College didn’t forget its staff either, honouring a number of teaching and support staff for their commitment to making the student experience at the College second to none, and such a vibrant and exciting place.

The proceedings were rounded off with an award for the overall student of the year, A levels student Katie Jones chosen by Mark Dacey, Chief Executive of NPTC Group of Colleges. Katie is off to Oxford University to study English Language and Literature after achieving an outstanding four A*s.

Speaking about her time at Neath College Katie said:

‘’ I feel very privileged, it was completely unexpected. The last two years have been great, I’ve really enjoyed studying here, my lecturers have been very supportive and I’ve had some great opportunities, so I reflect on my time here fondly.’’

The ceremony was compèred by actor and presenter, Kev Johns, who introduced the nominees and awarded the winners’ trophies and the first and only Welsh woman in Wales to climb Mount Everest Tori James gave an inspirational speech.

Tori was a member of the first all-female team to ski to the Magnetic North Pole in a 360-mile polar challenge and holds the record for the longest open sea kayak in UK waters which she set with the Beeline British Team, That’s not all for such a motivated adventurer; Tori and her friend enjoyed an adrenaline-filled cycle ride of 2400km along the length of New Zealand and on top of this has raised thousands of pounds throughout her career for different charities and for her outstanding volunteering and fundraising work, she received The Prime Minister’s Points of Light Award.

Adventurer Tori gave this advice to our students:

‘’My advice to students would be to dream big, find out what you are really passionate about, and don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone because ultimately this is where you are going to find your potential. Ignore the sceptics and understand that there is always more than one route to your destination if one doesn’t work out – you will find another way,’’

Students at NPTC Group of Colleges achieve consistently outstanding results in both A Levels and vocational qualifications.  2023 saw the college achieve an overall pass rate of almost 99 per cent. A* – B grades are on par with last year, with more than half of students achieving those grades. Almost a third of students achieved the top A*- A grades, and over three quarters achieved A* – C grades. For the students who followed the Gifted and Talented (GATE) programme, it is also good news, with 84 per cent achieving A* – A grades and 100 per cent A* – B grades.

Mark Dacey, Chief Executive of NPTC Group of Colleges, said:

The award ceremony was a great success: “It’s a privilege to be able to congratulate all the students on the hard work and dedication they have demonstrated. The Student Awards is a celebration of the effort these remarkable students have put into their studies. I want to thank everyone involved for making this event such a success, with a special mention to the evening’s sponsors.

On behalf of all staff at NPTC Group of Colleges and the Board of Governors, I send my heartfelt congratulations to all the award winners.”

Sponsored by RTL Group and Route Media.

Award Winners:

Student of the Year Sixth Form Academy – Katie Jones

Student of the Year Building Engineering Services – Catrin Holmes

Student of the Year Business & Tourism Management – Imran Haque

Student of the Year Computing and Digital Technology – Barnabas Mark Barna

Student of the Year Construction and the Built Environment –  Adam Badran

Student of the Year Creative, Visual and Performing Arts – Ronan Rees

Student of the Year Catering, Horticulture – Ellisha Butler

Student of the Year Engineering – Scott Mille

Student of the Year Foundation Studies – Lauren Parsons

Student of the Year Hair and Applied Therapies – Marie Hudson

Student of the Year Health, Social and Childcare – Natalie Richards

Student of the Year Sport and Public Services – Alfie Fairhead

The Glan Afan Grammar School Prize for the Best Science A Levels – Eleanor Mogridge

The Port Talbot County School Prize for the Best Arts A Levels – Ellie Tarrant

William Lewis Jones Maths Prize – Max Tam

Saraswati Award – Elena Cioata, Tayla-Lee Parry

Haulfryn Award – Oliver Jones

Pathways Training Student of the Year – Mohamed Rithwan Thangeswaran

Junior Apprentice Student of the Year – Ashton Williams, Amelia Smith

Entrepreneurial Spirit Award – Jonathan Jones

Adult Learner of the Year – Stephanie Cottle

Access to Higher Education Student of the Year – Abigail Everton

Higher Education Student of the Year – Thomas Biffin

The John Brunt Award – Megan Amber, Grace Wilson

Welsh in the Workplace Award – Ifan Wyn Williams

Corporation Board Staff Award Support – Angela Gill

Corporation Board Staff Award Teacher – Carolyn Davies

Chief Executive Officer Student of the Year Award – Katie Jones

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