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Promoting technical and vocational pathways

Date: 14 Mar

Read on to find out more about the Truro and Penwith On Route Tour that highlighted the technical and vocational pathways that are available to young people

We all know the benefits and pathways of apprenticeships and T Levels; but do we really?

I have worked in education for over 17 years in various capacities, but it wasn’t until I worked for the business arm of a local college that I really understood apprenticeships. I don’t think my knowledge would be the same without that experience. T levels were not even a thing back then, so this is a new learning curve for me.

Experience is what we are promoting to our students as careers professionals, and I’d like to put forward the argument that it is no different for us adults. How do we know something unless we experience it?

You won’t know, what you don’t know, so experiencing it counts.

“We all need to have up to date information about our local Post 16 providers, so we can pass it on to our students.  We may think we know what’s on offer, but things are always changing.”   Jo Ledger, Careers Leader, Sir James Smiths School



South West Institute of Technology (SWIoT)

The image above is of the new state of the art facilities at Truro as part of the South West Institute of Technology (SWIoT). The SWIoT is a collaborative partnership that aims to put the South West on the map, as a great place to learn, work, recruit, invest and innovate in the digital, engineering and manufacturing sectors. For more information about the vision, courses, education partners and more visit their website.

Image above: Tony Wright Business Development Adviser for Construction providing a tour of the facilities


I learnt a great deal about progression routes through levels in curriculum areas. Careers leaders need regular updates to allow them to give the best possible guidance, meeting employers and staff also helps to improve knowledge and practice.”  Leanne Sherwood, Careers Leader, Penair School

Careers Leaders are put under immense pressure and not given enough time to increase their experiences, to gain knowledge and understand the benefits of technical and vocational pathways. It’s an ever-evolving landscape with the fast-paced technical world we are living in.

The time taken in one day makes a big difference overall and cue the Truro and Penwith College ‘On Route: Careers Leaders Tour’ organised by one of our esteemed Enterprise Advisers Mark Lewin, earlier this month.

The day showcased the vocational pathways on offer, the college facilities (which I have to say are outstanding), as well as talks from industry professionals, including Jon Kelley, Early Careers at St Austell Brewery and Veryan Palmer, Director at the Headland Hotel; they both fully endorse and support current apprentices on various pathways. What’s more, we got to experience the most fantastic lunch prepared by the current level 2 apprentices and get their views on the apprenticeship experience (pictures below).

“I had never visited Truro College for a tour and I didn’t know lots of what they do beyond what I have read in their prospectus. That doesn’t give you a true impression of what it is like and what is available. I learned a lot about what the courses they run and what courses are planned for the future”  Melanie Thomas, Careers Leader, Bodmin College
“From a personal point of view, I’m of the old school who believes that A-Levels and Universities are the pathway to a successful career but this visit has broken down that stereotype and shown me that there are limitless and exciting opportunities, whatever entry point into 6th form” Jo Jones, Careers Governor for Sir James Smiths School


Keep your eyes peeled for future events. Mark plans to run future events for more Careers Leaders to get this experience so let us know if you want to come!

Written by,

Ruth Bennetts, Enterprise Coordinator