Learners and staff at Coleg y Cymoedd have started 2015 in style with a host of award wins across the collegeâ€™s academic and vocational departments.
The college, which has 3000 full time learners across its five campuses in the Rhondda Cynon Taff and Caerphilly Boroughs, is celebrating national awards recognition for its engineering, hair and beauty, academic and A-level departments.
The WJEC has given the college special cause to celebrate this festive season, following the exam boardâ€™s announcement that one of its learners has been selected as the Level 1 Welsh Baccalaureate Learner of the Year.
Dion Newtown, 18, from Clydach Vale, is currently working on her Welsh Baccalaureate as part of her skills for further studies course at the collegeâ€™s Rhondda Campus. In addition to her college work, earlier this year Dion travelled to Cambodia to spend her summer volunteering with the Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO).
The WJEC has also announced that former Coleg y Cymoedd A-level learner, Shannon Britain, scored the highest marks in A-level law across the whole of England and Wales this year. Shannon received full marks in her law exam, and her overall A*, A*A (in A Level law, English Literature and history) secured her a place studying English literature at Oxford University.
The 2014 WorldSkills Finals saw Ashleigh Simmons, a hair and beauty learner from the collegeâ€™s Nantgarw campus, beat off competition from more than 300 entrants to receive the bronze award and the privilege of training with the British Hairdressing Squad. While at the event, Ashleigh also took first place at the Welsh National Championships, with fellow course mate, Bethan Walters securing third place.
The collegeâ€™s Nantgarw-based engineering team, have been confirmed as the UK Further Education Team of the Year in the high-profile annual Pearson Teaching Awards.
The departmentâ€™s 28-strong team received the prestigious silver award as recognition of the breadth of expertise in aeronautical, electrical and mechanical engineering and drive to be the best provider of engineering apprenticeship training in Walesâ€.
Speaking on the award recognition, Judith Evans, principal of Coleg y Cymoedd, said:
â€œOur entire college joins together in celebration of this array of awards wins. These recognitions are a perfect end to an exceptional year for Coleg y Cymoedd and signify the dedication and hard work of our learners and teaching staff.
â€œOn behalf of the entire college I congratulate Dion, Shannon, Bethan and Ashleigh. These successes are just rewards for their commitment to their personal development and Iâ€™m sure many more will follow in the near future.
â€œWe also applaud our engineering departmentâ€™s outstanding achievement at the Pearson Awards. The departmentâ€™s leadership and staff exemplify the commitment to educational rigor that exists across all of our campuses.
â€œAs we look towards the New Year I would like to thank all of our learners, staff and corporate partners, for their collective efforts to ensure that our college continues to succeed in its mission to strengthen South Walesâ€™ communities through excellent education opportunities and vocational training.â€
Rhondda Cynon Taff