Globally sourced skills come to Cymoedd

Even tutors benefit from going back to class, and a recent exhibition at the our Nantgarw campus provided a chance for those who have taken that opportunity to showcase the creative skills they have gathered from around the globe. 

Learners, staff and visitors to the campus were able to view a range of exhibits created by tutors. All the pieces on display were made possible thanks to the skills tutors have been able to gain and refine through courses funded by the Skills Priorities Programme.

Thanks to the Programme, tutors from across the college’s four campuses have been able to take part in courses and a range of professional development opportunities that have enabled them to bring a wider range of skills, knowledge and processes to the college, which they can then pass onto learners.

The body of work on display at the show includes, among others, creations by chocolatiers, blacksmiths, textiles specialists, fine artists, painters, pattern cutters and photographers. In addition to finished works, many of the pieces tutors volunteered to display were there to illustrate new practices and processes, which learners will now be able to acquire as a result of the programme.  

Just some of those skills include: Experimental Pattern Cutting approaches obtained at the internationally renowned Central St Martins design college, traditional marionette carving crafts from the masters at the ‘Puppets in Prague’ workshop, new drawing techniques homed at The Broadway Drawing School in Cardiff, and from San Francisco, dark room processes developed by the world-famous photographer, John Sexton.

Reflecting on the hard work and talent on show at the exhibition, Foundation Diploma Art & Design Lecturer, Claire Prosser, said: “The quality of the exhibits on display at the college not only illustrates the exceptional skills of our tutors, it stands as a celebration of their dedication to their own development and desire to provide the highest standards of training to those they teach.”

The Skills Programme also allowed for college representatives to investigate state-of-the-art tech and practises that can be applied to various courses and disciplines, with one tutor travelling to Singularity University in Silicon Valley to explore combinatorial exponential technologies and their effect on multiple industries.

Commenting on the show, and the Programme that made it possible Coleg y Cymoedd Principal, Karen Phillips, said: “One of our goals is to help instil a passion for learning in our learners that fosters a lifelong drive for continual development. So, it is vital that we support our staff in leading by example, by pursuing all opportunities to do the same.  This commitment to supporting our tutors and staff to enhance their own skills, represents another way in which we seek to enable our learners to benefit from the most up-to-date teaching practises, skills and academic learning.”

The national Skills Priorities Programme has been designed to allow the Further Education sector to respond to and develop provisions to address job specific, higher-level skills gaps, at a regional level as identified by Regional Skills Partnerships. It also supports Further Education Institutions to develop the skills base of their staff through continued professional development activity.          

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