Loughborough College has claimed the top award at a national celebration of learners, educators, and educational organisations.
Named Centre of the Year at the Aspiration Awards, the College beat competition from across the UK, with judges particularly impressed with the Caring Services Department for supporting learners through high-quality teaching and placement opportunities.
Created by the educational charity and leader in vocational and technical learning NCFE, the Aspiration Awards are now in their fifth year and recognise individuals and organisations who have exceeded expectations or helped others to achieve.
Jo Maher, Principal and CEO at Loughborough College, said:
“I’m so proud that Loughborough College has been recognised for the outstanding provision and opportunities offered to our amazing health and caring service learners.
“I think this award reflects both the incredible talent, endeavour, and attitude of our students, as well as the hard work, passion, and commitment of our staff. Well done to everyone who has played a role in this wonderful achievement.”
The Caring Services Department at Loughborough College offers a wide range of programmes to support achievement and progression for all learners, with qualifications spanning a range of levels and specialisms within early years, health and social care.
A key focus of the centre is providing a curriculum that meets the needs of local and national employers. This year, Loughborough College also started delivering T Level qualifications in Education and Childcare, as well as Health and Science.
To further support learners on the work-focused T Level qualifications, Loughborough College are creating a new T Level building that will be ready from September. It will include an early years-style classroom, and a two bed teaching ward, designed for students to experience the practical environments they will find later in their careers.
Earlier this year, Grace Burton, a health and social care learner at Loughborough College, won the gold medal at the WorldSkills UK competition and learned of their victory during a special live programme from Channel 4’s Packed Lunch studios.
Grace said: “The WorldSkills UK competition was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. The mental and physical skills I’ve gained have helped me to develop and set me up for my future. The entire process was amazing and the support I received was great.”
The College and learners are dedicated to fundraising and supporting their local community. They work closely with the Falcon Centre, which helps the homeless and those in need across Leicestershire. The College also supported the Centre’s Christmas shoebox appeal, donating over 100 boxes to support the homeless.
David Gallagher, NCFE Chief Executive, said:
“There isn’t just one definition of success. It could be going above and beyond to exceed expectations, overcoming obstacles to achieve the unexpected, or coming up with new and innovative ways of working to help others achieve.
“This year’s Aspiration Awards winners are examples of how individuals can overcome barriers to achieve and fulfil their potential – and how a fairer education system for all learners can only serve to empower inclusivity and choice.
“I want to congratulate everyone who entered the awards this year. They’re a reminder of the transformative power of education and why our core purpose at NCFE is dedicated to ensuring no learner is ever left behind.”