From education to employment

London South East Colleges reaches final of national excellence awards

London South East Colleges is celebrating its continuing success today – having been selected as a finalist for the Association of Colleges’ Beacon Awards 2019-20, in the Excellence in Real World Learning category.

The outstanding work of the College’s hospitality team to support its students with the development of high quality technical and career skills was highlighted, making the unique provision stand out from other entries.

Based at the College’s BR6 Restaurants in Orpington and Greenwich, students get hands-on training from experts in industry-standard, commercially-run facilities, together with a wide range of work experience and employer engagement opportunities.

The AoC Beacon Awards celebrate the best and most innovative practice among UK colleges each year. This award is sponsored by Edge, the independent education charity. It celebrates colleges which have developed high quality practical teaching and learning approaches that give students experiences that are real, meaningful, challenging, stretching and life changing.

Finalists were announced last night at the AoC’s Annual Conference, which took place at the NEC in Birmingham. The College celebrated further success as former student Lauren Polson (19) was announced as Runner Up Apprentice of the Year in the AoC’s Student Awards.

Lauren, from Orpington, attended the College since the age of 14, progressing into an apprenticeship at BR6 restaurant. Lauren’s success in this role led to her being selected as a finalist for the prestigious award and she is now working as a talent manager for restaurant group D&D London.

Dr Sam Parrett OBE, CEO and Principal London South East Colleges, says: 

“We are once again delighted that our outstanding provision has been recognised externally. We are extremely proud of our staff and students who work so hard to achieve this success – and grateful to our supportive employers and stakeholders who are so integral to our pioneering learning programmes.

“We are also very proud of our apprentice Lauren, whose hard work, dedication and commitment has led to her being chosen as a runner up for the highly contested Apprentice of the Year Award. Lauren is a credit to the college and to her new employer, D&D London. She is a fantastic example of a young person who chose to take a further education pathway to career success – and has made the most of every opportunity given to her.

David Hughes, Chief Executive of the Association of Colleges said:

“This award showcases exactly why colleges are so important to every community and why people value them. Colleges are inspirational because the teaching delivered is accessible and students get to experience education in a relatable way. Having a curriculum that students can identify with is hugely important for developing skills that will be used long after they have left and gone onto the next stages in life.”

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