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  • 08 Feb 2017"Focus is crew-cial," rower tells students

    Rowing legend and Guinness World Record holder, Emily Blagden, had BCoT Sport and Public Services students pulling together at a motivational talk arranged by BCoT sports lecturers last week. 

    Emily and her crew of three other women took part in the Great Pacific Race 2014 - rowing across the Pacific. The physical and mental challenge of rowing the 2,400 mile was made more difficult by the dangerous currents, a hurricane and a tropical storm – the boat even started to break about 40 days in and so the team had to do emergency maintenance and repair on the journey. 

    During her talk, Emily spoke to students about the importance of focusing on life goals: “Think about where you want to be and how you’re going to get there,” was the message. During students’ questions, Emily explained: “Beforehand, I never thought I could do something quite so challenging – now I know I can, and am looking ahead to what I can do next.” 

    BCoT Sports lecturers Jamie Dockree and Darryl Taphouse arranged Emily’s visit to help students think about their own goals now and in the future. It’s part of BCoT’s aim to connect students to inspiring and real-world experts to motivate and teach them.  “At college we do everything we can to give learners with the skills and qualifications they need to go onto university or work. But confidence and self-belief has to come from within – our job is to nurture this and encourage young people that they can succeed,” said Taphouse.


  • 24 Jan 2017Students takeover Basingstoke Holiday Inn

    Catering and Hospitality students from Basingstoke College were under the spotlight on Friday when they created and served a banqueting buffet at the Basingstoke Holiday Inn for more than 50 hotel staff.

    The 17 Level 3 students took over the Basingstoke hotel’s kitchen for the day, to prep' and make the buffet that was a belated Christmas party for the staff. The students chose dishes that reflected the traditions of the international guests, with British foods alongside specialities from countries like Czech Republic, Greece, Italy, Nepal and Slovenia.

    Student Benjamin Chandler, who was Head Chef for the night, feels the event pushed him and helped prepare him for progression into the industry. “During the day, I got to experience all the pressures, challenges and rewards of working in the hospitality sector. The opportunity has given me has a real taster for what life could be like – and I can’t wait!”

    The College has been working with the hotel for the last year to help give students industry experience and understanding of what local employers need. It was a chance for the students to show how they perform under pressure. Lis Holmes, General Manager of the hotel said. “From an employer’s point of view, it’s great to see what the future industry professionals look like.” 

    Vicki Quilter, Course Director, said “It was a great experience for the students to show what they are capable of in front of an employer in their premises. I was very pleased with the maturity of the learners and their enthusiasm to impress. Everyone worked so hard and I couldn’t be more proud.”

  • 19 Dec 2016Student set to fight in European Championships

    An ambitious and determined Public Services student is set to fight in the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu European Championships in Lisbon, Portugal in February 2017.

    Rosie Clarke, who started the martial art two years ago with the aim to raise the profile of women’s Jui-Jitsu, had no idea she was going to become so addicted to the sport she now loves.

    “I was 14 when I started and due to the lack of female interest at the time, I found myself grappling with grown men in the adult’s class. Although at the time it was tough, I think this experience has contributed to my success as I have always pushed myself to the limit.”

    Rosie has experienced significant success since starting, winning the English Championships and medalling at the British, as well as becoming the Junior European Champion and taking home silverware from other competitions. In this time, Rosie has also gained a sponsor: Scramble, a top clothing and equipment brand in the industry.

    In the run up to the event, BCoT has offered to help fund Rosie in fulfilling her dream of competing at the Championships.

    “It is only right that we support her in any way we can,” said Course Director, James Booty. “She is an exceptional individual who has ambition to be successful and I wish her the best of luck.”

    Excited to take part, Rosie is appreciative for all the support BCoT has given her and cannot wait to fight against Europe’s best.

    “Without the funding support from BCoT, I would have struggled to make it to the event, so I am so grateful for their kindness. I have been training hard recently, trying to make sure I am in good shape for the event – I am there to win.”

  • 16 Dec 2016BCoT shortlisted for national Award

    BCoT in line for top award for use of technology in teaching.

    Basingstoke College of Technology (BCoT) has had the quality of its use of technology in the classroom acknowledged by being shortlisted for a prestigious award by the Times Educational Supplement in its annual awards for 2016.

    BCoT is one of eight colleges to be nominated for the award of “Outstanding use of technology for improving teaching, learning and assessment” in these esteemed awards which acknowledge outstanding achievements in Further Education. BCoT’s entry focused on its leading work in using blended learning in the classroom which combines face to face interaction with students and online technology and apps. The College is also part of a county wide initiative to train Digital Apprentices who are at the forefront of designing e-learning solutions that enhance the students’ experience and support higher levels of achievement.

    Principal, Anthony Bravo, feels strongly that a college of technology should be championing the use of technology to constantly improve the learning experience for students. He said: “The pace of change in communications technology today is incredible. At BCoT, we have already found that embracing these technologies has many benefits – from widening participation and engagement with all learners to giving tutors additional means to monitor a student’s progress.”

    He continued: “As a college that focuses on the development of advanced technical skills – we are training the entrepreneurs, scientists and engineers of the future in a world where technology underpins all industries. Our students leave BCoT prepared for university and employment with technology skills that give them a real head start in the world.”

    The TES (Times Education Supplement) Further Education Awards are now in their sixth year and celebrate the dedication of leading colleges, providers, teams and individual staff. A record number of entries were received for the fourteen award categories this year, giving the judges a really challenging task to narrow them down to a short list.

    Apprenticeships and skills minister Robert Halfon, who will be attending the Awards ceremony, described all the short-listed entrants as the ‘champions’ of further education. He said: “Further education is one of the most important tools we have to give millions of people the education, skills and jobs for the future. That’s why it’s important to celebrate our FE sector, and the excellent work that is going on in colleges across England delivering quality training.

    “Congratulations to everyone up for an award at the TES FE Awards 2017. You are champions of further education and play a vital role in ensuring that people of all backgrounds get on the ladder of opportunity to fulfil their potential. Thank you also to TES for making these awards such a success.”

    All those shortlisted are invited to a glittering ceremony at the Grosvenor House hotel in London’s Park Lane on 24 February, when the overall winners will be announced.

    To read Anthony Bravo’s recent editorial pieces on the use of technology in education, please select the links below:


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