Students and staff have celebrated a year of success for Bedford College Group at their annual Bedfordshire Achievement Ceremony where guest speaker author Ruth Hogan told the audience: “Education is a gift but you are the magic ingredient.”
Bedford College Group was created when Bedford College merged with Tresham College in 2017. The group now has 14,700 students and 980 staff who also work with almost 1,000 employers to support 2,400 apprentices. It is one of the top 10% of colleges in the UK for progressing students on to positive destinations.
The Bedfordshire Achievement Ceremony, held at Bedford’s Corn Exchange, was all about the students and staff who have made a significant impact or achievement in their studies or supported others.
The big award was for Student of the Year which went to Liam Kilby. After a shaky start at school, Liam excelled at college and took part in the World Skills competition. He is now studying for a BSc in Computer Science at the University of East Anglia.
Runners up for the award were Janis Cirss who arrived in UK from Latvia aged 15. He was an “A” student and is now a trainee with Ernst & Young national accountants, and Summer Gill who is currently on work experience with Vivienne Westwood having won the International Professional Clothing Awards student category.
Other awards handed out on the evening were:
- Teacher of the Year: Susan McGrath
- Staff Innovator of the Year: Natalie Morris
- Staff Customer Focus Award: Amy Cleary
- Inclusion Champions Award: Ashley Spears
- Professional Services Staff of the Year Award: Saima Nasir
- Student Participation Award: Suzanne Mugalu.
On the night the group’s principal and CEO Ian Pryce CBE, gave special thanks to Bedford Borough Council for supporting the college group in a bid to win the cash for the Wellingborough project at Tresham College, he also talked about the millions of pounds of investment that had been secured to create an Advanced Engineering & Construction Centre at the riverside campus in Bedford and a Zoological Education Centre at Shuttleworth College.
Also highlighted was Roger Marriott, chair of governors, and various board members who give their time and expertise for free behind the scenes to help the college progress.
Joining the celebration was Bedford and Kempston MP Mohammad Yasin, Mayor Dave Hodgson and Head of the Chamber of Commerce Rod Calvert OBE DL, together with major Bedfordshire employers.
The event was sponsored by Bedfordshire Fire & Rescue Service, Innovation On-Site Ltd, BedfordBID and Roseview Windows.