Employers in the local and regional community served by North Hertfordshire College are this month being given a firsthand opportunity to see and experience the skills of students as they take over full operation of the Broadway Hotel in Letchworth for two days.
On Wednesday 26th January, a group of business, catering, and hospitality students will begin the initiative by “shadowing” all Broadway staff members and, over the next 24 hours will take on complete responsibility for the hotel. This will range from making beds to front of house management, and include staffing the lunch buffet and carvery, handling all normal daily hotel trade, plus taking care of an evening Rotary Club function.
As the UK moves towards an economy with greater emphasis on the private sector, the involvement of business people in influencing the future of Further Education has become essential. Reflecting this, the main event, on 27th January will be an opportunity for invited guests to forge partnerships that will change and shape the direction taken by NHC in the community, with the aim of matching the skills students have to those that employers need.
Thursday’s event will be hosted by NHC Principal and Chief Executive Fintan Donohue, who champions collaboration between business and college to enhance students’ practical learning experiences. Recently, in The Times Educational Supplement, he wrote: “We need to produce students who can enter the workplace with confidence and with the skills to start their own business or to add value to existing business.”
Beginning at 4pm, guests and strategic managers from NHC, will explore a number of themes focused on student enterprise, including the role of “work-ready” apprentices, the value of real work projects for both students and employers, the added value that students can bring to commercial businesses, and the development of student operated entrepreneurial ventures, epitomised by the “NHC Shine Valeting Centre”* located on the college’s Hitchin campus.
This ground-breaking day will be rounded off with dinner: freshly prepared and served by the students.
*This car wash centre, a UK business first for an FE college, is a new commercial franchise venture uniting NHC and businessman Steve Deverick in partnership. Opened last November, it demonstrates how colleges can promote and invest in entrepreneurial enterprise that enables students to work inside the business environment with confidence and a sense of “ownership.”
For further information:
Consultants First: Suzi Glennie/Lisa Gregg
PR Consultants to NHC
Telephone: 01525 712013/07931 120322
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