A group of Digital students are celebrating being the first-ever cohort to complete a Digital T Level programme at Barnsley College.
The students marked their achievements at a celebration event at the College’s SciTech Digital Innovation Hub, alongside employers from the sector who have provided industry placements and College staff.
The group began their course in September 2020 in challenging circumstances, given that they were starting a technical course with a practical focus while studying remotely due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite that, the students have worked hard over the past two years to develop their technical knowledge and practical skills.
The T Level programme has also seen the students gain hands-on industry experience from a work placement of at least 45 days, improving their general employability skills, and gain English and Maths skills where required.
Neil Johnson, Assistant Principal for Young People at Barnsley College, said:
“We are incredibly proud of these pioneering students who are part of the first cohort nationally to achieve a T Level.
“The T Level has been designed to enable students to acquire the knowledge and skills to progress to higher skills employment. The industry placement has allowed them to develop the skills and gain vital experience in roles aligned to their career aspirations. These students now progress with the full package of knowledge, skills and industry experience on to their next steps. We wish them every success.”
Leanne Brunt, Head of Digital Industries at Barnsley College, added:
“I am extremely proud to be Head of Department and see these amazing inspiring individuals leading the way in computing. To be part of the T Level programme and see the benefits the programme has bought to these students is exceptional. The students are our future software developers and are leaving us fully equipped with the skills, knowledge and behaviours required to succeed in their chosen industry.”
T Level Digital Production, Design and Development Student, Greg Devine, added:
“If you know you’re hoping to go into the digital industry it’s a T Level you need to do. The thing I enjoyed most about my course was the opportunities I got, we got to meet the Education Secretary and I was on the news. Next week I’m even going to the House of Lords to talk about T Levels.”
Barnsley College was the first College in South Yorkshire to offer T Levels, which are designed for 16 to 18-year-olds and studied at the same level as A Levels.
T Levels are for those who prefer a more technical education, rather than following a purely academic pathway, or a work-based apprenticeship. The programmes offer students a mixture of classroom or workshop-based learning and ‘on-the-job’ experience.