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A group of students listen closely to a mechanic explaining about a car engine.

Warm welcome for Bermuda visitors

The warm shores of Bermuda were swapped for a warm welcome at Openshaw when 13 students from the island explored the courses and facilities available at The Manchester College.

Students aged 16 to 18 from two high schools, Cedar Bridge Academy and Berkeley Institute, based in the island parish of Devonshire, took a tour of the Openshaw campus and enjoyed departmental workshops in Automotive, Hospitality and Catering, and Media, Computing and Business.

Tanya Simmons, Instructional leader at Cedar Bridge Academy, explained how the Bermudian education system mixes English and American models, so students sit GCSEs and Functional Skills. However, the system does not extend to degree level study and focuses on academic rather than vocational  study.

She said: “We want our students to experience different opportunities and different areas of study available. And as British Overseas Territory citizens, our students can access college education in England.

“Bermuda is 21 miles long and everyone knows everyone. Visits like this to The Manchester College give our students the chance to see that the world is a lot bigger than just Bermuda.

It’s great that The Manchester College have designed this tour and workshops, so we get to see the different departments and facilities that are available.

The group also had a chance to speak with fellow Bermudians and current college students Randi Dillas, who is studyingLevel 3 Music Technology, and  Charles Francis, who is in his first year of a Level 3 Computer Science and Digital Technology.

Charles said: “My course is really interesting and I’m learning how to code, make websites and explore how computers impact on society. Gaining an education is my main focus and I aim to study a degree in computer science or games design.”

Student Jahdiah Symminds, from Cedar Bridge Academy, said: “Today has been pretty good and I’ve enjoyed taking part in everything. I want to study nursing and childcare so I’m looking for a suitable college for me.”

Student George Peets, from Berkeley, said:  “Ideally, I want to be a professional rugby player, but I'd also love a career in sports medicine or physiotherapy.”

Carl Birchall, Schools and Recruitment manager, said: “It has been fantastic welcoming students from two schools in Bermuda, who are spending the week in the UK visiting a number of locations as many of the learners are considering further studies in England.

We have enjoyed getting the learners involved in taster activities with our curriculum areas, and hope they will consider The Manchester College for their study options in the future.

Find out more about the wide range of courses available at The Manchester College.