Bolton’s diploma courses proved a huge hit with the many pupils studying them.
For the last year the courses have been running in schools, colleges and training organisations across the borough, with Bolton offering a wider range of diplomas than 95 per cent of the country. Currently, 316 young people are studying the courses.
Bolton offers a wide range of diploma courses – from society, health and development to construction and the built environment – and the courses combine theory and classroom learning with practical hands-on experience alongside more traditional, academic subjects.
One pupil who has benefitted from the more hands-on learning approach that the diploma provides is Jade Goodwin, who has taken the engineering diploma.
“The course has been really good and I have done things I wouldn’t have expected, like visits to employers”, said Jade. “I’ve also started to develop a rapid prototyping machine for my diploma project.”
An important part of the diploma sees students spend around a week each year with local companies. Jade said: “It was good to see what it is like being in a business environment, meeting employers and seeing different products and processes.”
Rebecca Hutcheson does the society, health and development diploma, and has been impressed by the practical and interactive facilities on offer to her. She would like to study child psycho-analysis, and feels the course leaves her well on track to achieve her goals.
Rebecca said: "I would recommend the society, health and development diploma. However, total commitment is required, and anyone considering applying should make sure they research the course beforehand to understand what is involved".
By taking the construction and the built environment diploma, Dana Ahmed has learned a range of trades including brickwork, joinery, and painting and decorating.
As part of the course, students had to design a bungalow. “The course has helped me to understand what people do in the process of building from architects through to the various trades”, said Dana. “There is a really friendly atmosphere, good resources and excellent tutors.”
Dana now wants to stay in the industry and become an electrical engineer.