Walsall College have launched Bell Group’s 6th painting and decorating academy in the UK, with the aim to enhance its existing courses, as well as giving construction students the hands-on experience to succeed in the industry.
The launch of the Bell Decorating Academy took place at the College’s Green Lane Campus on 11th June, which included a talk from Bell Group’s CEO Craig Bell about what the partnership will provide to students.
Through a Q and A session, Level 2 and 3 students had the chance to ask questions about the Academy and the exciting opportunities available.
A number of guests were invited to the event, such as Neil Ogilvie, Chief Executive of the Painting and Decorating Association, as well as representatives from Bell Group, which included Aleksandrs Rutkovskis, a former Walsall College deaf student who now works at the organisation as a decorator.
The event also included a competition that was judged by Craig Bell, tutors and other industry experts, who assessed the quality of the students’ competition pieces applied during the one week lead up to the Academy launch.
As part of the competition, the students were asked to apply the Walsall College and Bell Group logos onto a wall area, and were judged on the accuracy of the application skills they have developed during their course.
Jamie Longdon, who is studying a Level 2 Diploma in Painting and Decorating, was crowned the winner and received a starter kit from Bell Group, which included a brush kits, scrapers, filling knives, shave hooks, rollers, abrasives and a decorator’s tool bag.
The Bell Decorating Academy will ensure students are skilled and work-ready through a range of opportunities, including work experience placements, apprenticeships and industry masterclasses from Bell Group staff.
They will also receive free workwear and will take part in community-based decorating projects around the West Midlands area.
James Norris, Assistant Principal in Commercial Development at Walsall College, said: “This partnership is a fantastic opportunity for our painting and decorating students to develop the skills to meet industry needs.
As an Outstanding training provider, we have a long history of successful partnerships with employers to ensure our students are equipped with the skills that are needed within their chosen industry. As such, most of our former students have built successful careers through their journey with us.
We are looking forward to working in partnership with Bell Group to deliver their training requirements and to give our students the best possible start to their career.”
Craig Bell, CEO of Bell Group, said: “Our academies help prepare young people for the working world, putting the theory of our trade into practice on site.
The students will gain a valuable insight into the industry, valuable knowledge, work experience and the chance at an apprenticeship with us in the future.
We already have former students from Walsall College that are working with us and I look forward to working with many more.”
For more information about enrolling on a course at Walsall College, please call 01922 657000.
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