News & Press
Local MP John McDonnell put his support behind increased funding for Uxbridge College during Colleges Week.
John McDonnell, for Hayes & Harlington (Lab) - also the Shadow Chancellor - visited Hayes Campus on the final day of Colleges Week, which ran from 15-19 October.
Colleges Week was part of the ‘Love Our Colleges’ campaign and included a national lobby of Parliament on 17 October for increased funding.
John McDonnell, who supported the call for increased funding, said: “Uxbridge College is at the heart of a community so it is a huge resource, and the underfunding of colleges is worrying. Lack of funding for colleges is denying people the opportunity for a second chance at education and training, and it is also an issue because we’re entering the 4th industrial revolution where there is such a big challenge for skills.”
Laraine Smith OBE, Principal of Uxbridge College, said: “We would like to say a massive thank you to our MPs for their support and for their visits in advance of and during Colleges Week. Uxbridge College is incredibly proud of the work it does and we certainly feel extra finance would add significant value to both the lives of young people and adults and to businesses and the economy at every level.”
David Hughes, Chief Executive, Association of Colleges, said: “Every single day colleges like Uxbridge College provide a world class education and transform the lives of millions of people. Colleges Week is an opportunity to celebrate the brilliant things that go on and a chance to showcase the brilliant staff that make it possible. It is simple, if we want a world-class education system then we need to properly invest in it.”
‘Love Our Colleges’ has called on government to increase 16-19 funding by 5% a year for 5 years to combat the reduction in education funding once a student turns 16 – whether they are in a school sixth form or a college. It is also asking the Department for Education to provide exceptional funding, ring-fenced for teacher pay.
The ‘Love Our Colleges’ campaign is a partnership between Association of Colleges (AoC), National Union of Students (NUS), Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), University and Colleges Union (UCU), Unison, GMB, TUC and National Education Union (NEU).
Whether it’s through top-class technical education, basic skills or lifelong learning, colleges help people of all ages and backgrounds to make the most of their talents and ambitions. Rooted in local communities, they are crucial in driving social mobility and providing the skills to boost local and regional economies.
Uxbridge & South Ruislip MP Boris Johnson has dubbed Uxbridge College “brilliant” following his tour of engineering, plumbing and building services workshops.
Re-tweeting our photo of him meeting staff and students in the plumbing workshops he said: “Thank you for the tour! Great to have such a brilliant college in Uxbridge and delighted to hear so much positive news today @uxbridgecollege - keep up the fantastic work!”
Laraine Smith OBE, Principal, who showed the Conservative MP around the college, said: “It’s always a great privilege to have our local representatives on site and Boris Johnson’s tour was no exception. It’s great to have his support and to have a chance for someone at a senior policy level see what amazing work we do and what a difference it makes to young people, business and the economy alike.”
During the tour, part of the MP’s regular visits to organisations in the constituency, he congratulated Uxbridge College on their ‘hat trick’ of successes along with Harrow College as part of the Harrow College Uxbridge College merger - success as local partners in the Institute of Technology process, being chosen to provide the new T Level (Tech Level) qualifications, and attaining the Mayor of London’s kitemark in training for the Construction industry.
Adventurer and author Anna McNuff joined some of Uxbridge College’s most inspiring students and employer partners to celebrate their achievements at an awards night recognising their success.
Anna, whose incredible endurance feats include cycling through every state in the USA and running 3,000 miles from one end of New Zealand to the other, is also the author of ‘The Pants of Perspective’ about her 148-day kiwi trip. As well as presenting the awards, Anna talked about her life and adventures - and shocked everyone by ripping off her baggy walking trousers mid-sentence to reveal the authorial ‘pants’ - a pair of lurid Spandex leggings decorated with rainbows, a unicorn and a wolf!
Students and employers who work with Uxbridge College received their awards from Anna and had their photos taken with her. The overall winner, who took away the Super Star prize, was Travel & Tourism student Chelsia Afonso. Chelsia (19), has gone from strength to strength, excelling in her studies, volunteering, and being chosen as a British Airways Inspire Student Ambassador, which as part of the role saw her as one of the passengers on an all-female flight with Carol Vorderman to commemorate International Women’s Day. Chelsia started at College on a Level 2 City & Guilds Cabin Crew course, going on to complete the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Travel & Tourism, which enabled her to gain a place at the University of West London on the BA (Hons) Airline and Airport Management. She also won a Jack Petchey Award, including for volunteering at Open Days and Parents’ Evenings, and was chosen for a Highly Commended Award in the national BTEC awards.
Principal of Uxbridge College, Laraine Smith OBE, said: “I would like to say a huge congratulations to all our student and employer winners at this year’s awards - as well as a really big thank you to Anna McNuff for making the evening so special. Whilst our awards are partly about some of the more apparent forms of success such as excellent grades and high pass rates, what really shines out among our winners is what they achieve as individuals during their time at college - be it through the challenges they overcome, the journeys they go on, or the people they turn into as they take up opportunities in and outside the classroom to fulfill their potential. I’m extremely proud to be at the helm of such a fantastic organisation that continues to make this possible for young people and adults year on year.”
The event, held at The Beck Theatre in Hayes, recognised winners from across the College’s academic and vocational programmes - including GCSEs, A Levels, BTEC qualifications, Apprenticeships and HNDs - and from among the 1,000 employers the College works with.
Star and Special Award winners were:
6th FORM CENTRE
Star Award (Sponsored by intu Uxbridge): Lul Aklilu
The Gavin Taylor Bursary Award: Nadeem Moledina
SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Star Award (Sponsored by M4Money Credit Union): Jenika Ranmal
Higher Education Award: Casilyn Magabulo
SCHOOL OF COMPUTING & INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
Star Award: Shkelzen Prelezi
Higher Education Award: Khaled Gholami
SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING (Mechanical & Electronics)
Star Award: Joshua Teixeira
Higher Education Award: Neesha Paul
SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING (Technology & Innovation)
Star Award (Sponsored by John Guest Ltd): Cameron Lynam
SCHOOL OF ENGLISH LANGUAGE TEACHING, LEARNING SUPPORT & FOUNDATION STUDIES
Star Award: Sayed Awlia Sediqee
SCHOOL OF HAIR, BEAUTY, HOSPITALITY, EARLY YEARS AND PERFORMING ARTS
Star Award for Hair, Beauty, Hospitality & Early Years (Sponsored by Dennis Williams Ltd): Sadie Loveridge
Star Award for Performing Arts: Demi Humphrey
The Comfort Simoyan Award (Sponsored by Dennis Williams Ltd): Narges Aslami
SCHOOL OF HEALTH, SOCIAL CARE & CREATIVE ARTS
Health & Social Care Star Award: Aiasha Mohamed
Creative Arts Star Award & Ian Hebditch Award: Ruby Khan
SCHOOL OF SPORT, TRAVEL AND PUBLIC SERVICES
Super Star Award (Sponsored by Lloyds Banks, Commercial) and Sport, Travel & Public Services Star Award: Chelsia Afonso
Higher Education Award: Connor Murphy
David Keating Memorial Award: Wiktoria Szewczyk
EMPLOYERS AND APPRENTICES
Intermediate Apprentice Award (Sponsored by the Hillingdon Chamber of Commerce): Kyle Matson
Advanced Apprentice Award (Sponsored by the Hillingdon Chamber of Commerce): Kimberley Way
Apprentice Employer Award: Chalfont Electrical Services Ltd
Work Experience Employer Award: Triangle Site Project Team, Galliford Try Building - London & South East Commercial