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A young Ballymoney student who opted to do a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Construction and the Built Environment at Northern Regional College instead of completing her A levels at schools, feels she made the right decision as it was a much better preparation for university.

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The Department for the Economy today has launched a public appointment competition to recruit 32 governing body members across five further education colleges. Commenting on the competition and inviting applications from all sections of the community Economy Minister Gordon Lyons said: “This is an exciting and significant opportunity to influence the provision of education and skills in Northern Ireland. The successful candidates will help us to support the economic recovery post Covid-19 and sustain our aim of building a modern economy, which includes supporting the most disadvantaged by ensuring access to learning that leads to sustainable career pathways.

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Northern Regional College has celebrated its students’ resilience, determination and success with its annual Student Recognition Awards. Traditionally known as a high point in the academic calendar, the awards allow Northern Regional College staff, students and employers to have the opportunity to celebrate student achievements, ensuring that students who go above and beyond are recognised and congratulated.

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As the end of another academic year approaches, school leavers face a myriad of choices and have some important decisions to make. Should they stay on at school, look for work or consider an apprenticeship or other training opportunities? Recognising how difficult it can be to navigate these next step, Northern Regional College, in collaboration with the other Further Education colleges in Northern Ireland, has produced a package of resources to promote and enhance apprenticeship schemes.

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Higher Level Apprenticeships (HLA) offer a ‘win-win’ situation for those involved by delivering work-based training and qualifications to employees and a financial incentive to employers. Jordan Gaw from Ballyclare is a second year Computing apprentice at Northern Regional College. Through the HLA he spends four days per week with his employer Hutchinson Engineering in Kilrea and the remaining day in the College’s Farm Lodge Campus in Ballymena engaging in classroom-based learning.

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Northern Regional College has achieved the Carers’ Federation Quality Standard in Carer Support accreditation as an acknowledgement of the College’s good practise and commitment to student carers. Head of Student Services, Stephen McCartney, the College’s designated Carers’ Lead, said the accreditation is recognition of the important contribution that carers make to society.

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