Weston College bucks national trend with HE growth
By YouPR | Wednesday, January 09, 2013, 16:17
Weston College has seen a phenomenal leap in applications for its Higher Education (HE) courses, bucking a national downwards trend.
Weston College graduates celebrate in St John's Church
Recent statistics reveal that degree applications have fallen eight per cent nationally compared with the same period last year. It is the lowest drop for six years.
But Weston College's applications for its HE courses beginning 2013 have increased by 23 per cent.
Reasons for this surge include higher-than-average graduate employment figures (65 per cent of 2011 Weston graduates, compared with a national average of 45 per cent) and the fact that 20 per cent of Weston College's honours graduates gained a First Class degree in 2012, well above the national average of 14 per cent.
Former Graphic Design student Lucy Finch is a good example of how a degree at Weston College can help prepare you for the world of work. "I enjoyed every minute of my time at Weston College and am so grateful for everything I have achieved," she said. "It gave me experience pitching to and working with real clients and helped me to get experience in the design world.
"The Weston College staff are fantastic and provided all the help and encouragement I needed. As part of the degree I won a competition to re-brand the Weston-super-Mare Sand Sculpture Festival; I was then offered a work placement which since I have graduated has become a permanent position with Pace – a Clevedon-based design and print company."
In addition, Weston College offers more teaching hours in smaller class sizes compared to universities. Computing degree student Nelson Katende commented: "The small class sizes allow me to receive more one-to-one contact with my tutors, who have also helped me to make valuable contacts in the industry."
Students have also commented that another benefit of studying a degree at Weston College is that taking a degree 'on the doorstep' is a far more attractive prospect than accumulating increased debt by studying away from home. Former student Jane Cooper said: "I live in Weston-super-Mare and being able to study a degree here has been very convenient and has saved me money. It is a great College and I have learnt so much on the BA (Hons) Early Years Education".
Weston College Principal and Chief Executive Dr Paul Phillips said: "Every year, more and more students choose to study degree level courses at Weston College. We have invested millions of pounds in our campuses, and our students have reaped the rewards, achieving outstanding exam results, better graduate job prospects and we are recognised for the quality of our degree courses across the UK."
Earlier this year Weston College was given the highest rating possible by education inspectors for top standards in its degree provision.
Following a year-long scrutiny of the College's Higher Education programmes, inspectors from the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education awarded the highest judgment possible and the College was recognised as the top-performing College in the South West and ranked in the top five UK-wide.