Engineering learners are leading lights


Three Engineering learners from Cymoedd’s Rhondda campus were awarded first prize in this year’s St. David’s Day Competition. The competition, which has become an annual event in the college calendar forms part of the wider celebrations for Welsh Week.

Welsh Week provides the opportunity to celebrate all things Welsh, and includes a range of activities across all four campuses. The aim is to encourage learners and staff to celebrate their heritage and their language.

This year, individual learners and groups were asked to answer the question ‘What does Wales mean to me?’ through any medium they desired.

Each Campus Director was given the task of choosing the winning entry on their campus with the overall Coleg y Cymoedd winner being selected by Vice Principal David Finch, Head of Welsh Language Developments Alison Jones and Welsh Language Officer Lois Roberts.

The successful learners on the Rhondda campus and Overall winners were Alex Joshua Howe, Evan James Chapman and Brandon Jason Knight. The learners studying on the Level 3 VRQ Engineering Apprenticeship came up with the idea to manufacture a replica brass Davey Lamp using the knowledge and skills acquired in their studies and the equipment available in the college workshop.


They carried out research on the development of the miner’s lamp and the significant part it played in the mining industry, providing light to work by and an accident prevention system as it detected “firedamp” and lack of oxygen. The ‘lamp’ was also to become the emblem of the South Wales miners whose broader role was to bring education, leisure, medical and cultural events to the coalfield society. The lamp also held some personal memories for the learners as their grandfathers and great grandfathers were proud Welsh miners and had related stories of the camaraderie during their time working in the mines.


On receiving the award Alex, Evan and Brandon thanked their family members for their work in the mines, acknowledging the sacrifices that the coalfield society working men, women and children gave during their working lives in such dangerous conditions.

Congratulating the winners Campus Director for the Rhondda campus, Carolyn Donegan said “These learners have demonstrated their total commitment to their learning having travelled from a starting point as Vocational Access foundation learning to Level 3 Engineering.  They are so strong in their vocational area that they are on a Most Able and Talented pathway. They have certainly rose to this challenge, their research and production of the lamp is excellent”.

The competition resulted in some outstanding work submitted by the learners.  The winning entry at the Aberdare campus and Joint-Runner up overall was the Replica Rugby Pitch. This was a joint project by Sean Evans and Dylan Joseph who are studying on the E3 Construction Course and the learners from the Level 1 Creative course Thomas Biggin, Marcie Dalladay, Courtney Henning, Harry Jones, Jenna Jones, Saskia Gough, Charlotte Thomas, Megan Warner, Rhiannon White, Tiegan Griffiths, Dymonde David, who were involved in the decorating of the stand.


School Links Learner, Katie Ashleigh Williams’s poem was selected ‘winner’ at the Nantgarw campus and Joint-Runner up overall. Kyle White, studying on the Level 1 Health and Social Care course at the Ystrad Mynach campus took the winning prize for her Welsh Dragon artwork.


Commenting on the success of the competition and Welsh Week Head of Welsh Language Developments Alison Jones said: “It was great to see not only the number of entries we received for this competition, but also the quality of those entries. Judging the overall winner was very difficult as it was clear to see how much effort and skill the learners had demonstrated. As a judging panel, we felt very proud of our learners and glad to see them celebrating what Wales means to them”

Engineering learners are leading lights



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