From education to employment

Borders College’s Racing Academy programme given top accolade at CDN Awards

It was a great night for @BordersCollege at last night’s College Development Network (CDN) Annual Awards after they were ‘Highly Commended’ in the Employer Connections Award category for the Scottish Racing Academy (SRA) programme.

The SRA programme was once again chosen by a prestigious panel of judges from across a wide range of Scottish sectors after being ‘Highly Commended’ in the Innovation category at last year’s awards.

This year’s ceremony took place at the Radisson Blu, Glasgow, with the aim of celebrating the successes and achievements of many outstanding projects and initiatives delivered by colleges throughout Scotland.

The Employer Connections Award recognises creative approaches that a college has taken to enhance active and effective engagement activity with employers that support the ambitions of The Scottish Government’s Developing the Young Workforce and Skills Strategy.

The Scottish Racing Academy represents a collaboration between Borders College, Scottish Racing and industry partners from across Scotland who have committed to either taking students on work placement or to skill and upskill their current employees to create a sustainable workforce for the future.

The programme has allowed the talented Scottish people employed in the industry to remain in Scotland and gain the vital qualifications and skills needed to pursue a career in Horse Racing.

The ultimate aim of the programme is to create a world-class education and training offer that has a positive impact on the recruitment, skills, career development/progression and retention of racing staff in Scotland.

Heather Anderson, Vice Principal for Curriculum & Student Services, said:

“We were delighted to receive the ‘Highly Commended’ accolade for the Scottish Racing Academy. The programme was built to meet the needs of the employers within the racing industry and took over a year to design in collaboration with Scottish Racing.

“Lynne Gilchrist, Assistant Principal Borders College and Eleanor Boden, Manager of Scottish Racing Academy, devised the programme to improve the skills of those currently working within the industry and to create a pipeline of new talent who want to move into the industry.”

Borders College Assistant Principal Lynne Gilchrist commented:

“We are absolutely delighted that our SRA programme was ‘Highly Commended’ in the Employer Connections Award category.

“The uniqueness of this submission is that our employer connection is not with one employer but with a range of employers within one industry who have offered a sustainable, effective work placement. 

“This has resulted in 87% of our first cohort of full-time learners gaining employment, and all this under the challenging circumstances of a global pandemic. We are very proud to be recognised.”

The CDN Awards recognise the talent, innovation and achievement demonstrated by colleges, their staff and their learners.

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