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Seventh Form is a UK-first for education and Telford
A ground-breaking new venture is being launched in Telford to address the gap between education and business.
A new '7th Form' is being launched at Telford College, merging the A level offerings of a traditional sixth form with direct links to universities and local businesses to give students viable careers destinations.
Alongside the traditional A level and combined courses being offered by the college, the 7th Form will also offer 10 distinct career routes in leading industries.
“The merger between Telford College of Arts and Technology and New College Telford has given us an opportunity to think outside the box," said principal Graham Guest.
“We've been able to make some exciting and dynamic changes to further education and put forward a UK-first concept.
“Ever since arriving here, one of my priorities has been to strengthen links with universities and employers, and involve them more closely in the development of our vision, and our curriculum.
“Traditional sixth form colleges put the emphasis on qualifications – the new 7th Form at Telford College will instead focus on the skills which employers tell us they need and the career opportunities students can move into.
“This will address skills gaps in industries, open students' minds up to new sectors and give them a clear and stress-free choice of what to study after their GCSEs.
“The 7th Form will also ensure students are on the right A levels for their career route when heading to university and ensuring their degree is seen as a smart investment – not a mounting up of debt.
“There will also be a strong ethos on careers development and soft skills such as communication.
“Students will have the opportunity to develop their academic and technical skills whilst also receiving support from an industry mentor from a local business in their chosen career route."
The 7th Form will be located to the Haybridge Road campus as part of a £2.5 million-plus investment in learning facilities.
To be at the forefront of education, the college will also be bringing virtual reality and new technologies into its facilities and teaching to inspire students in their learning.
Mr Guest said: “This is not just a gimmick to give a sixth form a new name. The 7th Form really will be a bridge between education and careers through our university and employer partners.
“Bringing the 7th Form over to the Haybridge Road site will give students the chance to benefit from the £15 million which has been spent on industry-standard training equipment and university-standard facilities over the past few years."
The official launch of the 7th Form will take place at the college's first open event of the year on Wednesday 18 October from 5pm to 7.30pm at Haybridge Road, Wellington, TF1 2NP.
Those interested in finding out more should pre-register online at www.defineyourfuture.co.uk to sign up to the event.
Image credit: LAST COPYRIGHT SHROPSHIRE STAR JAMIE RICKETTS 06/10/2017