From education to employment

Barnsley College launches new entrepreneurial initiative

Matt Hutton, Director of Bond Bryan Architects Ltd.

@BarnsleyCollege has launched an all-new entrepreneurial initiative for students aged 14-16 years. The Enterprise Project is a 12-week programme which gives students the opportunity to become Project Leaders as they embark on a journey to renovate the outdoor space at one of the College’s campuses.

Students have been taking part in workshops and virtual meetings with industry experts since the start of the programme and have now finalised some of their ideas for the renovation, including a shed and planters. Students have also presented the programme to Sheffield’s basketball team, Sheffield Sharks, who have agreed to supply the College with a basketball hoop and sports equipment for use in their project. 

One of the industry experts who met with the students was Matt Hutton, Director of Bond Bryan Architects Ltd., who delivered a presentation outlining his personal journey into architecture and spoke about the career opportunities available within the industry. Matt and his team were responsible for the design of two Barnsley College buildings; the Sixth Form College and ‘The CUBE’ Construction Centre on the Honeywell campus. The practice also designed the double RIBA-award winning National College for High Speed Rail in Doncaster and the Engineering Heartspace for The University of Sheffield.

Students also had the opportunity to work with Steve Widdowson and Lewis Winstanley of Oaksbridge Ltd., a joinery and shopfitting specialist. Steve and Lewis demonstrated safe and proper use of hand-held power tools whilst working alongside the students as they constructed the planters they designed.

Steve said: “It’s been great to share some of my skills and knowledge with the students. Having worked all around the world as a joiner, I know how challenging this career can be. It involves long days, lots of travel and hard work. It was great to see some of those qualities in the students and their completed planters demonstrate how hard they worked.”

The project was created by the College’s Enterprise department which provides students with the chance to gain employability skills via a host of regular workshops, core tutorials and events, many of which connect them with local industry experts and employers. The Enterprise team provides advice and a variety of funding options for work placements including opportunities overseas and also funding and support to students who wish to set-up their own businesses.

Enterprise Team Leader, Jess Widdowson, added:

“It was fantastic to have Matt speak to our students as part of the Enterprise Project as he’s an excellent example that working hard really does pay off. The students were really engaged and asked lots of questions. We were also really lucky to welcome Steve and Lewis as they shared some in-depth knowledge of the industry and made it possible for students to create the planters they wish to use as a centrepiece in their outdoor space.”

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