When Coleg y Cymoedd learner Owen Bennett enrolled at the Aberdare campus in September, he could not have imagined what doors the qualification would open and so quickly.
Owen, originally from Llanelli but now living in Penderyn, enjoys cooking and is keen to pursue a career in the Catering and Hospitality sector. During his visit to the newly opened campus he was impressed with the facilities and knowledge of the staff and signed up to the Level 1 Professional Cookery course at the college.
During the year, Owen had the opportunity to improve both his Welsh Language and Customer Care skills through following the Welsh Medium Customer Care qualification – Yr Iaith Ar Waith (Using Language at Work). This course gives learners the opportunity to develop their Welsh language skills in a way that is relevant to the subject they are studying and prepares them for the workplace by ensuring they are confident when dealing with customers.
Fortunately for Owen, Alison Jones, Head of Welsh Language Development at the College, recognised his Welsh language skills and when she was asked by the owner of Caffi Soar, the newly re-launched café in Merthyr’s Welsh Centre, Canolfan Soar, to recommend a learner who was studying Catering and could also speak Welsh –she knew just the person!
When Owen was approached he was keen to pursue this opportunity as he realised it would provide him with the relevant experience for a career in the sector. Owen started work earlier this month and has already proved a valuable member of the team.
Welsh language campaigner and Cafe Owner Jamie Bevan said” Owen has a great work ethic and it is obvious that the experience he is getting at Coleg y Cymoedd has gone a long way to prepare him for employment. I couldn’t cope without him – he is an asset to the team and the business”.
Commenting on his employment Owen stated” This is a special opportunity to use the Welsh language and the skills I have learnt on my Catering course at the Aberdare campus, in the world of work”.
Witnessing the benefits of being able to speak Welsh and having studied Customer Care to learners such as Owen, Alison Jones added “I am delighted to see Owen doing so well and getting the chance to use his skills in Welsh, Customer Care and Catering – he has proved a ‘hit’ with the staff and customers”.