South Devon UTC in the News
New Principal leads students into new year at Newton Abbot’s pioneering technical college
XX September 2018
As young people with a flair for science, engineering and technology start a new term at South Devon University Technical College (South Devon UTC), a Woman of Science has begun her new role as Principal.
Claire Plumb has taken on the role as Principal, previously serving as Vice Principal of South Devon UTC. Having worked alongside outgoing Principal Ian Crews since the innovative secondary school for young people launched in 2015, Claire will continue to build on the success and achievements from the first three years.
With front-line experience of research and development in science, Claire will continue to strengthen the College’s reputation as a centre for excellence in STEM specialisms in South Devon. The new Principal hopes to ignite the spark of curiosity in the studies of Science, Technology, Engineering and the Environment for boys and girls in years 10-13.
The pioneering College on Kingsteignton Road, with its state-of-the-art facilities, offers an innovative model of learning for students that provides professional academic and technical education aimed to ‘develop a new generation of engineers, scientists and environmentalists’.
Newly appointed Claire commented: “I’m delighted to ring in this new school year as Principal of South Devon UTC. We’ve seen some great achievements throughout the first three years including excellent exam results and I’m looking forward to driving the college forward to further success. Like the rest of the South Devon UTC team, I’m passionate about encouraging more young people to study STEM subjects from year 10 to 13, enabling them to carve a fantastic career for themselves when they leave us.”
Claire continued: “We offer a unique alternative to other schools in the region and we are committed to nurturing a population of ethically sound and environmentally considerate engineers and scientists. Where possible, we look for ways in which we can instil passion and drive in students. There are so many opportunities for young people within STEM careers but unfortunately the region, like the rest of the UK, is experiencing a shortage of people with STEM skills. It’s important now more than ever to encourage our young people into STEM careers and I look forward to working with the team and our employer partners to support our students here at South Devon UTC.”
South Devon UTC offers the high-quality education of the standard school core curriculum, with subjects such as Maths, English Language, English Literature, and Science, in addition to specialist technical subjects aimed at engineering, technological or science-based careers. The curriculum also includes all year-round work experience opportunities and employability skills development. This is a key focus for students at South Devon UTC which results in an extremely high success rate for students achieving their further destination placements in higher level apprenticeships with local employers, University or with the Armed Forces.
In summer 2018, 100% of post-16 Applied Science students gained distinction stars in all of their qualifications. Furthermore, 70% of Engineering students achieved at least one distinction star with over half of those achieving either two or three distinction stars, the highest grade in these qualifications.
Students have already had an exciting, packed first week of term at South Devon UTC. The four founding employer partners, South West Water, Linden Homes, Centrax and The Environment Agency, led a series of interactive challenges that enabled students to experience the nature of their work. Local employers will continue to work with South Devon UTC teachers this year to extend learning beyond text-books and school desks.
South Devon UTC is currently recruiting students for the 2019/20 academic year. Young people with a flair for science and engineering due to start year 10 or year 12 in September 2019 should contact the college as soon as possible for more information. The South Devon UTC open day takes place on Wednesday 3rd October, between 10am-3pm; register your interest to attend the event by calling 01626 240201 or visiting https://southdevonutc.org/open-evenings/
Gunning for glory! Newton Abbot students fired up for Royal Navy Field Gun Challenge 9th July 2018
Newton Abbot students get ‘Marine in 15’ in cooking masterclass. 18th July 2018
Students at Newton Abbot’s pioneering technical college were put through their paces when a Royal Marine Chef visited to lead an energetic cooking masterclass.
Year 10 and Year 12 students of South Devon University Technical College (UTC) received a lesson in healthy cooking from Colour Sergeant Mike Beaton. Founder of the popular Marine in 15 videos which have received over 13,000 views on YouTube, Mike put the students through their paces in a blood-pumping cooking masterclass in the college’s Challenge Arena.
Known as the ‘Mary Berry’ of the Royal Marine Commandos, Mike inspired students to fuel their mind and body by teaching them how to cook Crème Fraiche Chicken with Vegetables. Students learnt how to cook a healthy, hearty meal that ticked all the major food groups that recruits in the Royal Navy need to ensure they achieve peak performance.
As well as teaching the young chefs how to cook delicious, healthy meals, Mike highlighted how recruits in the Royal Navy fuel themselves using food, ensuring they are ready for combat. Students learnt that they can integrate healthy food into their own everyday lives, supporting their learning and development as they progress to the next stages of their careers.
Colour Sergeant Mike Beaton commented: “It was a pleasure to teach the young guys and girls at South Devon UTC all about healthy, hearty cooking and how we use food as fuel in the Royal Navy. I love using ‘Marine in 15’ as a platform to talk to students about the variety of options that are available in the Royal Navy. From cooking to commando, Engineer to Submariner, there’s a role for everyone in the Royal Navy and they all need to be fueled by good, healthy food.”
Mike continued: “As well as ensuring that the guys and girls achieve peak performance in whatever they do, I also encouraged them to think of cooking as a great social activity. Looking after your body and cooking up delicious recipes that friends and family can enjoy really does bring people together.”
The ‘Marine in 15’ masterclass was part of a range of activities South Devon UTC students were undertaking for Healthy Eating and Wellbeing Week.
Ian Crews, Principal at South Devon UTC, commented: “It was fantastic to get someone so energetic and enthusiastic as ‘Marine in 15’ in to talk to the students about the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Mike did an excellent job in educating our Year 10’s and Year 12’s about what to eat to fuel your mind and how to prepare it yourself rather than eating something out of a takeaway box.”
The Marine in 15 masterclass follows the annual Royal Navy Junior Leaders’ Field Gun Challenge that students from South Devon UTC recently participated in. Colour Sergeant Mike Beaton accompanied by Warrant Officer 1st Class Phil Cooney RM from the Education Awareness Team at the Commando Training Centre in Lympstone presented the ‘Field Gunner of the Year’ Trophy to joint winners Connor Johnson and Ross Pratt. The prize, made in the UTC and incorporating a model field gun on a piece of teak from HMS Warrior donated by the Royal Navy, was awarded to the “Gunners” who showed the most courage, determination to achieve excellence, unselfish team spirit and cheerful sense of humour. It reflects the core values and ethos of the Royal Marines.
The college is currently recruiting students for the 2019/20 academic year. Young people with a flair for science and engineering due to start Year 10 or Year 12 in September 2019 are invited to the next Open Evening on Wednesday the 3rd of October 2018, 5-7pm. Alternatively, you can contact the college for more information. Call 01626 240201 or visit https://southdevonutc.org/
A driven team of students from South Devon University Technical College have been pushing all the boundaries to take part in the prestigious Royal Navy Junior Leaders’ Field Gun Challenge. The annual contest is led by the Royal Navy and sees teams of 16-24 year olds race against each other to assemble and manoeuvre a Field Gun, used in historical warfare.
The UTC Barbarians, a team formed of South Devon UTC and Scarborough UTC students, undertook a week-long Royal Navy boot camp to prepare for the Field Gun Challenge, which took place on 6th July at HMS Collingwood in Fareham, Hampshire. The UTC Barbarians finished in fifth place in the plate 3 final after competing against trainees from the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force, as well as those from the National Sea Cadets, local colleges and a team from the Missouri Military Academy.
This is the third year the science and engineering specialist school, South Devon UTC, has entered the hardcore challenge, which is very similar to the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity Gun Challenge, and is run along a course on a flat track with no obstacles.
The UTC Barbarians were pleased with their performance and were congratulated by college principal Ian Crews, who commented: “I’m so proud of our students. Once again, they faced the challenge with great enthusiasm and determination and it has really paid off. The opportunity to compete in such a unique challenge, which we enter because it is hugely rewarding and develops leadership and team working skills, is an experience our students will never forget.”
Team members competing in this year’s challenge trained hard with a Royal Navy instructor ahead of the Field Gun Challenge to be at their best for the arduous Royal Naval tradition that focuses on teamwork, leadership and discipline.
Bailey Duke, a student at South Devon UTC who is joining the Royal Navy or Royal Air Force in September 2019, has always had an interest in the armed forces and has been introduced to the military lifestyle through this challenge.
Bailey, 18, commented: “The discipline of the Junior Field Gun Challenge is real. We stayed on a real ship on a Royal Navy base in Portsmouth which was a great way of finding out more about the military lifestyle. I gained a feel for the strict organisation and the daily routine and I learnt the importance and value of self-discipline.”
This year, South Devon UTC welcomed the Royal Navy as an employer partner. The Royal Navy will now help shape the curriculum, provide Challenge Projects and offer work experience to ensure South Devon UTC students are ready for work when they finish Year 13.
Stephen Green, Teacher of Engineering, commented: “The Junior Leaders Field Gun Challenge not only promotes the Royal Navy as a career, but also serves as a leadership and team building challenge in the development of young people at the UTC. The competition is supported by the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity and we will be fundraising for them as part of our charity work. As a retired Naval Officer, it is a charity close to my heart.”
The college is currently recruiting students for the 2019/20 academic year. Young people with a flair for science and engineering due to start Year 10 or Year 12 in September 2019 are invited to the next Open Evening on Thursday 4th October 2018, 5-7pm. Alternatively, you can contact the college for more information. Call 01626 240201 or visit https://southdevonutc.org/
Woman of Science announced as new Head at Newton Abbot’s pioneering college
South Devon University Technical College (UTC), Newton Abbot’s specialist secondary school for science and engineering, is preparing to hand-over the leadership from Principal Ian Crews to Scientist and Educationalist, Claire Plumb.
Currently in the role as Vice Principal at South Devon UTC, Claire Plumb will take up the Principal role at the college from September 2018. Claire, who has front-line experience of research and development in science, has worked alongside outgoing Principal Ian since the innovative school for young people with an interest in science, technology, engineering, and the environment launched in 2015.
Plymouth born and bred, Claire aims to continue to strengthen the College’s reputation as a centre for excellence in STEM specialisms in South Devon and to ignite the spark of curiosity in the studies of Science, Technology, Engineering and the Environment for boys and girls in years 10-13.
The pioneering College on Kingsteignton Road, with its state of the art facilities, offers an innovative model of learning for students that provides professional academic and technical education aimed to ‘develop a new generation of engineers, scientists and environmentalists’.
Newly appointed Claire commented: “I am absolutely delighted to take up this new role with responsibility for leading the College, Ian has done a tremendous job and I look forward to building on the first three years’ achievements and guiding our students and the college to further success. We offer a unique alternative to other schools in the region, our commitment at South Devon UTC is to nurture a population of ethically sound and environmentally considerate engineers and scientists. Our hope is that we will have inspired our students to drive forward positive change that will significantly benefit our planet.”
South Devon UTC offers the high-quality education of the standard school core curriculum, with subjects such as Maths, English Language, English Literature and Science, in addition to specialist technical subjects aimed at engineering, technological or science-based careers. The curriculum also includes all year-round work experience opportunities and employability skills development. This is a key focus for students at South Devon UTC which results in an extremely high success rate for students achieving their further destination placements in higher level apprenticeships with local employers, University or with the Armed Forces. In summer 2017, 100% of their post 16 students got their desired placements and this summer’s leavers look set to do the same.
Reflecting on his experienc since his appointment in 2013, Ian commented: “I have acquired a wealth of special memories since my appointment as Principal of South Devon UTC and have witnessed the growth in confidence and competence of so many of our young people. I am particularly grateful to our growing number of employer-partners as their input to the education of our students has empowered and inspired so many young people. There is nothing more rewarding than to witness the motivating impact of learning in a professional and real-world environment. It has been my utter pleasure to see how the College has equipped many students from across the region with the qualifications, skills and experience needed to progress successfully to university, higher level apprenticeship or employment. We have seen great success here since we opened, thank you to all who have helped and supported us and I wish Claire, and all the staff and students every future success.”
South Devon UTC is currently recruiting students for the 2018/19 academic year. Young people with a flair for science and engineering due to start Y10 or Y12 in September 2018 should contact the college as soon as possible for more information by calling 01626 240201 or visiting https://southdevonutc.org/open-evenings/