HIGH SCHOOL students at Strode College ended the academic year by welcoming visitors to an event aimed at helping adults find new careers.
The college’s Higher Education Showcase was held last week.
Sarah Probert, Head of Faculty, introduced the event, which consisted of graduates in History, Heritage and Archaeology, Business Administration, Psychology and English with Foundation and Creative Writing majors.
Strode College’s adult higher education courses are run in partnership with the University of Plymouth and have dedicated classrooms and a common room in the Higher Education & Skills Centre.
Emily Keen, an English creative writing student, presented The Write Stuff, the first article she published in What’s On Somerset magazine.
She shared her experience of the course, which is delivered through creative workshops and small group sessions to provide one-on-one support.
The course curriculum covers a range of topics from 16th century journaling to website content creation.
Emily joined Strode just before the pandemic after leaving her job as Marketing Director to develop her content writing skills.
She decided to take the Stode College course after discovering it online.
“It was a breeze, the course had everything I was looking for and it was close to home, perfect for someone with a young family,” Emily said.
“I loved the course. It gave me the confidence and skills I needed to become a freelancer.”
Emily’s first assignment was to co-write a pantomime for this year’s Christmas break.
She also has several small business clients that she writes content for and plans to write for more in the near future.
Another student, Jeni Waller, is graduating from Stode College for the third time and is now a graduate.
She said: “This is the third time I’ve been a student at Strode College. I graduated from high school here a few years ago, then returned to pursue a teaching qualification and now have a BA (Hons) degree in History, Heritage and Archaeology.
“I think Strode has the right education for all stages of life and is local.”
Jeni presented an educational website she had developed for the children of Somerset (historykidssomerset.weebly.com) to educate them about the local towns.
Since then she has been a teaching assistant at a Mendip school.
Maranella Raso has completed the Management (Business) Foundation Degree – a course that she began at Strode after graduating from high school.
At the presentation, she said, “Entrepreneurship is something I wish for. My parents own their own business and her parents own their business – all in the food industry.
“For my final project, I researched the development of cooking camps for kids, where they learn all the basics of food preparation but also learn to manage the financial side.”
She will now be studying her final year at the University of Plymouth.
James Hunt recently completed a BA (Hons) in History, Heritage and Archaeology, for which he made a documentary about Shepton Mallet Prison.
Wanting to learn more about the daily operations of the prison and its history, he decided to interview former staff who still live in the area.
The result was an 11-minute video titled memories of a prison.
The prison closed in 2013 and is now a tourist attraction where James works part-time as an events coordinator.
“If there is enough interest, I will develop a sequel,” said James
“I want to interview an inmate, but they have all been transferred to different prisons across the country.
“Preparing this video was an experience; we just don’t know what life in four walls is like.
“The course definitely put me on the right path as I was at a crossroads early in my life.”
Strode College Higher Education offers a great alternative to studying popular subjects at a larger city university.
All adult learners have access to on-campus facilities at Ofsted ‘Outstanding’ College.
Studying is either full-time (two days per week) or part-time (one day per week) with time off for paid work.
A-levels or access to college qualifications are not essential if you have the experience and skills, and applicants can apply directly to the college.
For more information on the range of university courses offered by Strode College go to strode-college.ac.uk/he.