Looking to the future – creating paths into hospitality

Our college prides itself on constantly evolving to provide the skills our key local industries most need.

Our Principal, Danny Wild, has been explaining some of the many ways in which we have been supporting the hospitality sector to local businesses.

Danny was one the key speakers at Helping Harrogate Hospitality on 25 November. The event, held at Goldsborough Hall, was organised by Philip Bolson of Mr B Hospitality in partnership with the York & North Yorkshire Growth Hub.

Speaking on Supporting Hospitality for the Future, Danny told the guests and other speakers how the college was encouraging students to see the full range of opportunities that the sector offers.

Shining a light on opportunities – and role models

Catering stars Neil Mendoza and Callum Bowmer
Hospitality stars Neil Mendoza and Callum Bowmer

He said: “The college is providing careers advice that encourages students to think beyond ‘front-of-house’, because the hospitality industry also includes things like finance, marketing and much more.

“I also spoke about how our employers’ network, which ties into our commitment to delivering an employer-led curriculum, lets local businesses directly influence what kinds of courses and skills we provide based on their needs.

“We have also been active in producing media pieces to shine a light on locally-grown success stories in the media. For example, earlier this year we produced a widely publicised article which featured two former Harrogate College students who have become hospitality stars, Callum Bowmer and Neil Mendoza.

“These kinds of inspiring examples provide great role models for our students while promoting the local hospitality industry.”

Invaluable experience and collaboration

Danny discussed the lifeskills training that students have been getting too, such as customer service training experience – and how that was showcased at the college’s recent recruitment fair.

And he stressed the importance of developing students’ soft skills, especially STEM 7 (the core skills that underpin Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) skills, to arm them with transferable talents.

Our hospitality team ensures that our students gain some invaluable experience of working in a fast, public-facing environment through the themed dining nights that we hold during each year.

Hospitality students are also taken on regular fact-finding trips to local hotels and restaurants, like Rudding Park.Our partnership work with local businesses, meanwhile, has led to students producing sustainable dining menu ideas for RHS Garden Harlow Park.

Harrogate College Business Newsletter – March 2022

Harrogate College prides itself on working hand in hand with local businesses and organisations to provide the skills and training they need to ensure that our economy grows and thrives. Our monthly newsletter is a handy way of keeping our partners informed of developments at the college.

To receive future Harrogate College Business Newsletters directly to your inbox click here

Business Newsletter, March 2022

Dear Partners,

March was Green Month at Harrogate College and we were delighted to collaborate with local businesses, community groups and residents on a variety of environmental events.

To tie in with the month, we also introduced our carbon literacy training for students and staff as part of our ongoing commitment to sustainability.

Always pleased to work closely with local firms, we were pleased to team up with two Harrogate College Employers’ Network members in March – one who came in to give a talk, while another welcomed a visiting group of our students.

Some hospitality students, meanwhile, gained valuable insights into the demands of large-scale catering by visiting Rudding Park, where they were given a guided tour. And two of our Creative Practice MA students, who have now set up their own studio space, impressed the public with their fantastic final year showing.

We hope you enjoy the read.

Danny Wild
Harrogate College

Green shoots – and carbon literacy
Some local businesses played a leading role in our Green Month activities during March.

Techbuyer & Ortial Technologies gave a workshop on Sustainable Technology and How It Affects You. Twelve students and three members of staff took part, and enjoyed a presentation followed by a practical session which involved opening up laptops to see which components were salvageable.

Other Green Month events included a talk on Designing the Purposeful Career, a presentation from food waste charity Too Good To Go, and an art competition.

Meanwhile, as part of the college’s push to reduce our environmental impact, we have begun to train all of our staff and students in carbon literacy. We are excited to also offer this training to local businesses.

For more on Green Month click here.

Rudding Park trip
Our hospitality students enjoyed a guided tour of Rudding Park as part of their enrichment activities – and to prepare them for a week of work experience with a variety of local businesses.

The trip gave them a fantastic opportunity to see a large, full-scale catering and food production operation up close – and to sample some of the food the hotel grows in its own kitchen garden.

Read the full story here.

Building business links
Tracey Hopkins from Springfield Healthcare visited the college to give a ‘day in the life of a healthcare worker’ talk to some of our Level 3 learners. Tracey also gave tips about future careers in the sector during a really engaging presentation.

Course leader David Gaunt, meanwhile, took a group of Business level 3, year 1 students out to visit a high profile local firm, Techbuyer.

The students were shown around all of the business’s departments and briefed about the next stage of their link-up, which will involve going through mock interviews. David said: “This will form part of their grade for the course and is obviously excellent real world experience.”

Art and commerce
Two of our students who have been studying a Master’s degree in Creative Practice have wowed members of the community at their final year exhibition.

Presenting their work at Hopewell Studios in Knaresborough, Gill Owen and Helen Hopper showcased their journey of studying at Harrogate College. Friends, family and guests were invited to attend the show, alongside the Mayor of Harrogate, Trevor Chapman, and his wife. 

Now their studies are complete, Gill has taken on the role of technician in the college’s ceramics department, while Helen is considering further development of her practice in exploring glass. The pair have also set up their own studio space at Spa Studios.

Read more here.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this edition of our Business Newsletter – we’ll be back with more next month!

Meet an Employer – Round 2

A free webinar series that was started to keep businesses and students in touch during the pandemic is about to resume.

Harrogate College teamed up with the Department for Work and Pensions to launch in October, 2020. 

The scheme involves the college hosting webinars, featuring local businesses, that are streamed to students and jobseekers to help boost their employability skills and keep them informed of potential opportunities.

An electrifying new start

The online venture proved a hit over its first, ten-session run. Now the college is preparing to launch the second season on Tuesday 5 October with a session featuring eDub – a business that specialises in electric car conversions.

The webinar starts at 1pm and will be an opportunity to find out more about the company and ask questions. Individuals from eDub will also talk about their own career journeys and share insights into how to break into their line of work.

Feedback from the businesses that took part in the first round of Meet an Employer was overwhelmingly positive, with many commenting on what a great opportunity it was to showcase their services while giving something back.

Some of the webinars led to follow-up, one-to-one conversations and even job offers.

Keeping up the momentum

Harrogate College’s Partnerships and Development Lead, Holly Hansen-Maughan, said: “We had such a positive response from the first round of Meet an Employer. The webinars can be viewed by students from across Luminate Education Group – which includes Harrogate College, Leeds City College and Keighley College – and interested jobseekers.

“The scheme was started to help boost job opportunities and mobility, initially during lockdown, while allowing the college to serve its community which is always our number one goal.

“It was very successful and with a new programme of webinars now about to start we are aiming to keep the momentum going.

“We’re hoping lots of students and jobseekers will sign up to take part and I would urge other local businesses who haven’t done so yet to get in touch to see how they can get involved.”

To book a place on the next webinar click here. Details of further Meet an Employer sessions will be added to harrogate-college.ac.uk/contact/events as the year progresses. Any businesses interested in getting involved should e-mail Holly.Hansen-Maughan@harrogate.ac.uk for more details.