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HE Graduation 2020 DAN 7137Students who have joined university degrees in the final year thanks to their HND qualifications were among those celebrating at HCUC’s graduation ceremony.

The Higher Education graduation ceremony for the merged college group for Uxbridge College and Harrow College recognised the achievements of students from HNC and HND courses. This included Top-up HNDs, in which students study specifically to enter degrees in the final year. Equivalent to up to two years of university undergraduate study, HNCs and HNDs are targetted at industry skills such as Business, Computing, Engineering, and the Health and Leisure industries.

The group graduated in a formal ceremony at Brunel University London, wearing the traditional cap and gown of Higher Education, and celebrated afterwards with friends and family.

Dr Darrell DeSouza, Principal and CEO of HCUC, who presented the awards, said: “These qualifications are an increasingly popular route to university and it is wonderful to see so many of our students have the opportunity to progress to this level of education in this way, including via Top-up qualifications. Equally, our HNCs and HNDs are highly sought-after by employers, due to the way they are designed for industry with the help of employers themselves.

“I’d like to say a huge congratulations to all our graduates this year and I hope their success and the benefits they’re enjoying as a result will inspire others to follow in their footsteps.

“We are also looking forward to seeing future students on these courses and others benefit from brand new £8.6m facilities being developed as part of HCUC’s West London Institute of Technology, due to be fully launched in September.”

West London Institute of Technology, based at Uxbridge College, is just one of 12 such Institutes being developed nationally as part of Government strategy to close the skills gap in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects, by providing higher level qualifications and Apprenticeships. West London IoT is being developed in partnership with a wide range of employers including anchor partners Brunel University London, Fujitsu, Heathrow and West London Business.

The BTEC HNC Level 4 and BTEC HND Level 5 Diplomas, accredited by Pearson, were completed by Uxbridge College and Harrow College students in the following subject areas: Business; Computing; Computing Plus; Creative Computing – Games/Visual Effects; Electrical Engineering; Electrical and Electronic Engineering; Mechanical Engineering; Construction & The Built Environment; Sport (Community Sport); Travel & Tourism Management.

This year’s HE Graduates progressed to the following universities: Middlesex University, City University, Coventry University, University of Westminster, University of Brighton, University of Portsmouth, University of Hertfordshire, University of Surrey, University of Southampton, University of East London, University of Hertfordshire, Southampton Solent University, London Southbank, Nottingham Trent University, University of Northampton, University of Kent, Bucks New University.

* For more information about HNCs and HNDs go to

Trudie Roper seated 1200 IMG 42271Uxbridge College Sports student Trudie Roper is celebrating gymnastics success after representing Great Britain in Federation Internationale de Gymnastique (FIG) championships.

Trudie (17), and her teammates from Heathrow Gymnastics Club came fifth out of 24 teams in The Acrobatic European Championships 2019 (age 13-19 years category) in the event in Holon, Israel. The trio performed a routine set to music involving balance and dance.

She said: “Even though we didn’t win, I’m really proud of the result - especially as one of my teammates had a broken toe in the run-up to the competition so we couldn’t train as much as we wanted. I really enjoy acro and it was great to be part of such a big competition to represent Great Britain.”

Stuart Clapson, Trudie’s tutor, said: “Trudie has done so well and it’s a real credit to her that she manages to balance her studies and her demanding training schedule, as well as competing at such a high level. No doubt she will continue to do well long into the future if she carries on applying herself with the same level of dedication and enthusiasm.”

Trudie - who trains for up to 21 hours a week on top of her studies - is pictured with her teammates Molly Berry (left), Sumaiya Hines (second left) and their coach Alex Uttley.

Trudie has been doing acrobatic gymnastics for around ten years and been in her current partnership for four years. She is studying the BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Sport and is currently thinking about going to university.

Trudie and her team were also successful in European competitions in Portugal and Valencia in 2019.

DSC 0172Key business community figures put their support behind West London Institute of Technology at its dynamic Preview Launch, which marked early student and partnership successes, and showcased exciting £8.6m plans for its development.

Heathrow, Berkeley Group, Morgan Sindall Infrastructure, Atkins Global and Constellium UK presented the Sector Project Awards 2019, which recognised student achievements in innovation and skills, developed through a range of technical and creative challenges designed and supported by the employers.

The prestigious West London IoT, which opened in September, is one of just 12 IoTs currently licenced nationally to provide higher technical qualifications in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) sector. Engineering, Construction and Digital Technologies are among some of the core areas being served by its high-quality employer-led education and training in West London.

Dozens of local and regional employers, community organisations and other supporters attended the event, getting a chance to network and hear from the IoT’s anchor partners Brunel University London, Fujitsu, Heathrow and West London Business. They also viewed a new 3D video fly-through animation from Project Manager Robert Drury, showcasing plans for the extensive new facilities and accommodation being developed in the multi-million-pound fit-out at Uxbridge College’s site in Park Road, Uxbridge.

Dr Darrell DeSouza, Group Principal and CEO of HCUC, said: “Our preview launch was a great way of marking the start of this pioneering initiative and to celebrate some of West London IoT's early successes, and the Sector Project Awards 2019 reflected just how exciting it has been to immerse our new cohort in real-world work experience from the outset. I have every confidence that HCUC’s strong track record of student achievement - one of the key factors in having won the IoT commission - will continue to support high quality teaching and learning as the institute grows."

Pat Carvalho, Deputy CEO of HCUC, said: “The strength of the anchor partnership between HCUC and Brunel University London, Heathrow, Fujitsu and West London Business is key to the ground-breaking work we are now putting into play with West London Institute of Technology students. A key feature of our prestigious partnership is the dialogue between the knowledge and expertise of our wider employer network and this IoT, creating a curriculum and talent pool fit to deliver the higher technical skills employers tell us they really need. This event showcased all this brilliantly.”

Teaching and development of the higher technical qualifications - equivalent to university undergraduate study levels - at the IoT based at Uxbridge College, is being backed by hundreds of employers. Led by the merged college group HCUC, the IoT is an alliance with higher education and employers. The full range of IoT courses is being provided across sites at Uxbridge College and Harrow College.

Partners and other support employers help drive the content of the qualifications, provide placements and masterclasses, and give students the chance to work on real projects in their workplaces.

The Sector Project Awards were presented to the winning students, who have been working on their challenge briefs during the IoT’s first term after it opened its doors in September. Briefs for the HNC and HND students included: Morgan Sindall Infrastructure - developing a model of success for construction industry when working with local authority and community; The Berkeley Group - coming up with a combined heating and power system (CHP) for Southall Waterside Development; Heathrow - improving security for Biometric Check-in Solutions; Atkins Global and University Tech Centre, Constellium Ltd - to present an emerging ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) problem for a specific domestic or commercial or industrial sector.

Attendees on the night included Buckinghamshire College Group, Vyners School, Balfour Beatty, the Community Coding Club, Hillingdon Council, Hillingdon Chamber of Commerce, Hounslow Chamber of Commerce, Hayes Town Partnership, Pearson UK, PwC, KSBC plc and mmd web. IoT students, and staff developing, supporting and providing the IoT and its technical offer also attended.

Our thanks to the following to agree to speak at the event: Michael Heanue from the GLA, Prof Stefaan Simons from Brunel University London, Bally Grewal from Heathrow, Andrew Dakers from West London Business, and Ash Merchant from Fujitsu.

For more photos go to:


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