Record numbers sign up for SWC courses

South West College Dungannon campus
South West College Dungannon campus

Demand for low cost and locally-based routes to honours degrees has resulted in record numbers of students signing up for foundation degrees, according to new figures from South West College.

In four years, enrolments on the vocational courses increased by 77 percent as the college, employers and universities jointly rolled out 23 programmes that have helped more than 3,000 to study locally and consider progressing to a full honours degree or professional qualification.

The work-based qualifications combine academic study with workplace learning and typically take two years of full-time study or three years part-time.

The latest Foundation Degree in Arts & Design with specialisms in Product and Graphic Design, brings the total number of anticipated places available at South West College this term to more than 800.

William Young, Industrial Liaison Officer South West College, said the courses are designed with employers to ensure industrial needs can be quickly met with well-trained and high calibre talent:

“As our economy emerges from this deep and long recession, employers are focussing more and more on key employability skills. Gone are the days when employers could enjoy the luxury of extensive in-house training for new staff.

“The Foundation Degree, with the excellent blend of the academic and the vocational, provides a potential employer with the ready-made skills required to be effective and productive from day one.

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