Education and employment go hand-in-hand at Telford College.

Telford College | Principal and chief executive Graham Guest with the new Telford College brand identity | LAST COPYRIGHT SHROPSHIRE STAR JAMIE RICKETTS 06/10/2017We’ve reshaped our curriculum to meet the needs of the local business community, working in partnership with some of the area’s biggest companies.

Huge investment in university-standard facilities at our Haybridge campus means we offer courses which pave the way for careers in more than 70 different industries.

For example, we have expanded our engineering and construction programmes to help tackle a skills shortage.

And we have invested £750,000 in a new virtual and augmented reality suite which makes us one of the leading colleges in the country for developing skills in this exciting and dynamic hi-tech sector.

But cutting-edge technology is no good unless students are also equipped with the basics, and that’s why we are proud to see our maths and English results improving year-on-year.

One of our major innovations is the launch of our 7th Form – the first of its kind, blending traditional A level courses with direct links not just to universities, but crucially to industry mentors from local companies.

It means students get to hear first-hand from the people who have been there and done it, and understand the type of person they need to be to make it in their chosen career.

Having been a lecturer myself during more than three decades working in education, I know the importance of delivering consistently outstanding teaching and learning, and motivating students to be the best they can possibly be.

And having run my own business too, I’m equally aware of the value of giving students the sort of practical, relevant skills which remain constantly in step with the needs of the local economy.

There have never been so many opportunities for students, and I am honoured at having the opportunity to lead Telford College’s committed and experienced team during these dynamic and changing times.

We want to be the college for everyone in this community: whether you’re a school leaver looking to go to university or start a career, an adult developing their skills, or a business wanting to grow.

Graham Guest, principal and CEO

Read my news columns below and head to our social media links to keep up to date with our progress

For many people, this might even involve a potential career change. And believe me, it’s never too late to consider a new direction.

Here at Telford College, we’re encountering a growing number of people who have dipped their toes in the water of one particular sector, only to have a change of heart and switch to another.

But they needn’t worry –we have a team of experts on hand to help, at our learner hub on the Haybridge campus.

Zaneta Hyjek, from

Zaneta Hyjek | Telford College | Manchester Metropolitan University

Zaneta Hyjek | Telford College | Manchester Metropolitan University

Arleston, is one of many recent examples. The 20-year-old enrolled on a level two beauty course, but reached the end of her first year feeling it wasn’t right for her.

We helped Zaneta to move over to a level three business course with us instead – and it’s given her a new lease of life towards a career in marketing.

She went on to receive an unconditional offer from Manchester Metropolitan University to study business management – and is now hoping to travel to China this summer on an amazing fact-finding journey.

Not every young person knows exactly what they want to do when they leave school, and it’s our role to ensure they receive the help, support and information to understand the ever-growing range of study and career routes available.

It’s one of the reasons why we are running a series of ‘taster’ sessions at Telford College from January 28-31, giving prospective students the chance to try a bite-sized sample of a course so they get a feel of what it involves before signing up.

Before that, we’re also opening up our doors on January 23 for an open event,

Telford College | Welcome to college week

Telford College | Welcome to college week

from 5pm to 7.30pm, when staff and students will be on hand to talk through our range of full and part-time courses, plus higher education programmes, and apprenticeships.

And one of the highlights is bound to be a chance to explore our brand new virtual and augmented reality suite, which is taking learning to a new hi-tech level . . . whichever career route you eventually choose.

  • Graham Guest is principal and chief executive of Telford College. To find out more about the open event and taster sessions, see defineyourfuture.co.uk

It doesn’t matter whether you want to be an astronaut, accountant, construction worker or computer genius – you won’t get very far without basic English and maths skills.

They are the foundation for pretty much every modern-day career, opening up the widest possible range of job opportunities, and higher-level education choices.

This is why we are so proud to have once again climbed up the national league table of top-performers on the back of our latest English and maths GCSE results for young people and adults.

Telford College now sits in fourth place for GCSE English, and fifth place for GCSE maths, in the latest national achievement rates tables for general further education colleges.

We are also the number one general FE college for both English and maths GCSE passes within a 50-mile radius of our Haybridge campus.

Currently, we have more than 2,000 students studying functional skills or GCSE English and maths – and over a quarter of these are adults.

It’s a crucial part of what we do, and is why we are holding an Adult English and maths open evening at the college on May 21, from 4pm to 6pm, to advise how more adults can achieve these important qualifications or improve existing grades.

The importance of these qualifications cannot be over-stressed. It is estimated that workers with correct English and maths grades can improve their earning potential by as much as £80,000 over the course of their careers.

Our most recent set of English and maths GCSE results comfortably out-performed the national average, with 99% of students recording passes under the new 9-1 grading system, which has replaced the A*-G ratings for all GCSEs.

Graham Guest | Telford College

There has never been more choice on offer to young people in Shropshire, but English and maths qualifications remain an essential ingredient for many of the employability skills they need for a successful career.

One of our latest innovations at Telford College is the launch of a new range of aviation engineering courses and new Shropshire ‘aviation academy’, working with various partners including the Aviation Skills Partnership, RAF Cosford, Ryanair and Marshal Aerospace.

We are currently looking to recruit 100 students for the first intake in September, and are already receiving applications from all over the West Midlands.

So if you like the sound of an engineering career which could see you jetting off around the world, working with some of our best known airlines, get in quick . . . and make sure that you have your GCSE English and maths qualifications in place!

And that’s why, here at Telford College, we have announced an exciting addition to our curriculum.

Aviation Engineering Courses | Telford College

 Aviation Engineering Courses | Telford College

For the first time, we will be running aviation engineering courses, starting in September, training skilled operatives to work with commercial and military airlines.

It is part of an ambitious plan to create a fully-fledged Shropshire ‘aviation academy’, with students spending the majority of their study time at RAF Cosford.

They will get chance to maintain and test the performance of civil and military aircraft, using sophisticated computer tools and software.

The focus will be on improving flight safety, fuel efficiency, speed and weight of aircraft, as well as reducing system costs – our aviation engineers will be at the forefront of technological and scientific development.

Why aviation? The statistics speak for themselves. There is currently a massive demand for licenced engineers in the industry, which means there are some fantastic career opportunities out there.

Across Europe alone, it is estimated that around 132,000 new aircraft maintenance technicians will be needed by the year 2037.

We are now looking to recruit more than 100 students for our first intake in September, for levels two and three engineering courses which deliver specific aviation skills.

The intention is to build our aviation programmes right up to degree level, giving students chance to progress onto a BSc (Hons) in Professional Aviation Engineering Practice.

With a railway station right on the doorstep, the Cosford centre will be easily accessible not just to the people of Telford and Shropshire, but also the wider West Midlands area, including the Black Country and Birmingham.

Our programme is the only one of its kind in the Midlands, and is being run in partnership with the Aviation Skills Partnership, which has links with many major airlines, including Ryanair.

The organisation was established in 2013, with a mission to continuously improve education and training opportunities within the aviation sector, ensuring that the right people have the right skills, to get the right jobs.

In other parts of the country with similar academies, 100% of the most recent cohort have gained real employment in the aviation industry.

Aviation Academy | Telford College

 Aviation Academy | Telford College

We’re ready for take-off – so now is the perfect time for a fresh generation of aviation engineers to check in, fasten their seatbelts, and prepare take their careers to new heights…

To find out more about the new aviation engineering courses, see www.telfordcollege.ac.uk, or call our course hotline on 01952 642237.