Northern College named as a WorldSkills UK EDI Heroes Awards finalist - Northern College
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Northern College named as a WorldSkills UK EDI Heroes Awards finalist

February 19, 2024

Northern College is a finalist for a national award that recognises the importance of giving people from all backgrounds the best start in work and life.

Based at Wentworth Castle and set within 60 acres of National Trust grounds, Northern College is the only adult residential college in the North of England.

The college, which educates adults mainly from South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire, has been shortlisted in the WorldSkills UK EDI Heroes Awards.

The awards comprise seven categories and honour individuals and organisations that promote inclusive and innovative practices, projects and initiatives.

Northern College is a finalist in the Network of the Year category, linked to its work with community groups and the inclusive ethos that aims to underpin everything it does.

Emma Beal, Principal and Chief Executive, Northern College, said: “We are thrilled to be a finalist in these prestigious awards.

“We have a distinguished history of providing life changing opportunities to hundreds of adult learners every year many of whom have struggled with education previously.”

Northern College, which is Ofsted graded ‘good’, works with communities, charities and service providers to develop the skills, confidence, motivation and resilience of adults to:

  • progress towards formal learning or employment.
  • improve health and wellbeing, including mental health.
  • develop stronger communities.

A significant proportion of students are from disadvantaged backgrounds, are unemployed and have additional learning needs. Some learners left school with few or no qualifications. 

At Northern College, students can live on campus in residential accommodation, supported by a specialist adult teaching and support team, and immerse themselves in their studies.

The college offers a range of courses, from entry to higher level programmes, which inspire adults to progress and succeed regardless of their previous experience of education. 

In the college’s latest Ofsted report, published in May 2023, inspectors acknowledged that students from disadvantaged backgrounds, who often arrive with low self-esteem, overcome significant personal barriers to develop their skills and confidence. 

These students, inspectors noted, improve their resilience and confidence whilst at the college, which enables them to take positive steps towards their long-term goals and aspirations.

The WorldSkills UK EDI Heroes Awards are sponsored by the Skills and Education Group and the University Vocational Awards Council.

The winners will be announced on 7th March 2024 during a ceremony at the Houses of Parliament.

Find out more about our courses and support for adult learners.

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