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Location: Strode's College, High Street, Egham, TW20 9DR
Date: 25th April 2019
Time: 5pm - 7pm


For those still deciding about their university options Strode’s College is hosting over 65 universities at their Higher Education Fair 2019. The event is open to students, parents/carers and members of the public interesting in understanding university life, entry requirements, courses and all the all-important funding.

Naomi Bailey, Head of Learner Services and Libraries, explains why the Fair will help visitors identify potential career and study pathways, saying: “Higher education has changed dramatically over the years and there is lots for people to understand in order to determine if it’s right for them. It is no longer the preserve of just universities; the Windsor Forest Colleges Group offers a diverse Higher Education provision which is ideal for those who want to study further but stay closer to home. It’s exciting and varied from Aeronautical Engineering through to Visual Merchandising. We have lots of universities and experts on hand to provide advice and guidance to help our visitors determine what is best for them.”

Alongside all the universities in attendance Strode’s College Careers and Employability Team will be shedding light on progression planning and there will be expert talks such as ‘Top tips for succeeding at applications to competitive universities’ by the University of Leeds and ‘All you need to know about applying to Higher Education and Student Finance England.’

Universities confirmed to attend include the University of Bristol, University of Southampton, University of Leeds, Arts University Bournemouth, University of Lincoln, University of Winchester, University of Roehampton London, Royal Holloway University of London, University of Kent, University of Reading, University of Portsmouth, Bournemouth University, Bath Spa University, Coventry University, University of Chichester and Brunel University of London.

To find out more about the courses offered at the Windsor Forest Colleges Group of Langley College, Strode’s College and Windsor College please go to

Students from both Strode’s College and Windsor College are celebrating the news that they are on course for Oxbridge with offers to study Law, Psychology and Asian and Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Cambridge. Strode’s also has three first year students who have dramatically improved their chances of studying at the University of Oxford having been accepted onto the University’s UNIQ Summer School.

Each year over 6000 first year A level students apply to attend UNIQ. Only 1350 are offered places for the five-day residential which is designed to give an insight into university life, enable students to meet like-minded people and gain an understanding of a subject which interests them. Nathan Gage will attend the Engineering programme, Carmina Mudura has been accepted on to the Oncology programme and Roxana Knop, the Biology programme.

John Marrill, the tutor for Strode’s gifted and talented A*spire programme and the Oxbridge coordinator said: “Being accepted onto the UNIQ programme does not guarantee an Oxford offer but it certainly helps! There is a good correlation (34%) between students attending UNIQ and receiving offers so it is certainly worth students investing their energies into getting on the programme. We’re very proud of Nathan, Carmina, Roxana and our Cambridge offer students and their desire and determination to take advantage of the different enrichment opportunities which are pivotal to the Aspire programme.”

A*spire is Strode’s programme for its most academically able students. It is designed to expand horizons, be challenging intellectually and provide support to assist students to become competitive candidates for the most prestigious courses and universities.

A key aspect of A*spire is the encouragement for students to embrace super curricular endeavour. From complementing and expanding their learning with public lecturers, wider reading, academic podcasts, accessing academic radio and TV programmes, to completing MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) and attending museums and exhibitions.

Commenting on being accepted onto the UNIQ programme Roxana said: “The A*spire programme has encouraged me to challenge myself and apply for enrichment opportunities of this nature." Nathan added: “The residential will provide valuable experience and lessons regarding life on a university campus," and Carmina said: “I feel honoured to have been given this opportunity.”

Along with celebrating his Oxford UNIQ offer, Nathan Gage has also been successful in winning a place on The Sutton Trust US Programme which gives bright, state school students a taste of life at a leading American university. The all-expenses paid programme includes a one week visit to the US to get a taste of US higher education and culture. Commenting on how A*spire has made a difference he said: “A*spire has allowed me to see international opportunities of this nature as a reality, rather than a dream."

The vast majority of A*spire students have gone on to study at Russell Group universities on highly competitive courses such as Computer Science at ICL.  In the past two years four students on the programme have successfully gained places to study Biochemistry, History, PPE and Engineering at the University of Oxford.

Strode’s College celebrated record-breaking A Level results in the summer with a 99% pass rate, and both colleges achieved a flawless 100% pass rate for 16 April 2019their BTEC courses.

To find out more about A Levels, BTECs and the A*spire programme please go to

Langley College HND Business students were given an international insight at the recent Department of International Trade’s ‘Latin American and the Caribbean Roadshow.’ 

Course lecturer, Karen Cripps says “This trade show was perfectly timed as these business students are currently working on an assessed research project into the risks and benefits of international trade. It's great to see our awarding bodies select assessment projects which are really relevant in terms of current UK business priorities. Alongside project management skills, this module focuses on learning all about the opportunities for UK businesses to work with businesses across the world. This is really helpful in developing up to date commercial awareness.”

The students listened to panel discussions with international trade experts from Jamaica representing the Caribbean, Panama representing Central American economies, through to Latin America countries from the biggest such as Argentina and Brazil through to Peru and Chile. Although they had booked one-to-one sessions with country representatives, students found that they had pre-prepared their questions so well, they were all answered during the panel discussions. 

Tutor Karen Cripps continues: "This industry-informed research will be really useful when students write up their own research findings with local businesses, as they will be able to draw on what they have learned about doing business in the Caribbean and Latin America. We're also very grateful to the Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce who arranged for students to interview representatives from China and Japan.  It is so rewarding to be able to provide students with opportunities to apply classroom-based learning with industry experts, on a topic which is so interesting and relevant. Not only this but they are learning invaluable research, networking and communication skills”.   

HND Business student Arabella Truman commented: “I found the trip to be very beneficial and it really helped me to understand the risks and benefits of international trade. The people on the panel represented different countries in Latin America, and I found the amount of knowledge they have about these countries to be really interesting and useful. I had a list of questions that I wanted to be answered, and I’m pleased to say they all were. Now I know that this kind of networking events is a good platform to help your business”.  Varinder Bharaj and Maximillain Pettipher agreed that the event was really applicable to coursework, and provided first-hand experience of how businesses look to exporting abroad which is something they can feedback to their own friends and family.   

For further information on studying the HND Business Studies at Langley College please click here

Strode’s College students were given a powerful reminder regarding the importance of democracy and tolerance with a visit from John Dobai, a Holocaust survivor. John shared his story with over 100 students of living in Nazi-occupied Hungary and the loss of many family members in Auschwitz.

John likened his experience to the hatred of today and the need for everyone to be aware of the slow ways in which hatred can creep in, even in a most civilised and cultured country. Generously taking questions to enable students to better understand the nature of the Holocaust and to explore its lessons in more depth his advice was: “Even in very small ways we need to stand up to racism and challenge all comments and actions which sow discord in society today.”

His message certainly hit home with second year A Level student Fredrick White saying: “Talks like this are really important so we are not ignorant of what humans are capable of. They also help to prevent instances of genocide in the future.”

Commenting on the importance of hearing first-hand what happened in the Holocaust, Bernadette Joslin (Assistant Principal – Student Services), said: “It is a privilege for us to welcome John Dobai to our college and his testimony will remain a powerful reminder of the horrors so many experienced. We are grateful to the Holocaust Educational Trust for co-ordinating the visit and we hope that by hearing John’s testimony, it will encourage our students to learn from the lessons of the Holocaust and make a positive difference in their own lives.”

The Holocaust Educational Trust aims is to educate young people from every background about the Holocaust and the important lessons to be learned for today. The Trust works in schools, universities and in the community to raise awareness and understanding of the Holocaust, providing teacher training, an outreach programme for schools, teaching aids and resource material.

Strode’s College Performing Arts students danced their way to raising £510.12 for Cancer Research UK at the recent March Dance Showcase. Putting their course, creativity, versatility and individuality centre stage the sell-out performance incorporated a number of genres including Contemporary, Jazz, Lyrical, Street Dance, Samba and Modern. 

The BTEC Performing Arts (Dance) students only had one term to prepare for the Showcase. Working as a professional dance company, students choreographed a number of the dances which illustrated the breadth of their skills and learning. From a piece based on animal behaviour and movement of flamingos, a professional repertory of Bob Fosse’s Jazz Dance to Akram Khan's contemporary repertory based on women in World War 1 and pieces based on African American History.

Commenting on the success of the Showcase Eleanor Turner, Course Leader for Dance at the College said: "I am so proud of our Strode's Dance family! They show term after term how committed, talented and passionate they are about the Dance industry. They seize every opportunity to develop and I am proud to show off their hard work and success."

Every year, for the March Dance Showcase, the students use their democratic voice to vote and decide which charity the event will fundraise for. This year, the dancers voted for Cancer Research UK. Eleanor Turner explains how the £510.12 raised will support the charity: “Just £5 will kit out one research lab with essential chemicals, £15 will cover the cost of a visitor to a mobile awareness unit, £300 covers the cost for men to take part in a prostate cancer clinical trial for the day and £550 buys one next-generation DNA sequencing equipment.”

Commenting on the donation, Anna Banbula, Central Fundraising Executive for Cancer Research UK said: "You are amazing. Once again thank you so much for all your amazing fundraising and choosing to support us. Very well done to you all."

Students studying the Performing Arts (Dance) BTEC Level 3 learn to be well-rounded and versatile dancers in a vocational and academic context. Students progress to a number of leading universities and specialist Conservatories to study Dance.

For more information please go to or call Central Admissions on 01753 793000.

Thirty-six tutor reps met at the third Student Parliament at Windsor College today with students discussing the priorities they want the Student Union Executive to take on. The issues they are keen to get addressed include recycling, more campaigns and fundraising for chosen charities.

Tutorial focus groups gave their feedback on how to make the Student Parliament more effective with some great ideas raised and lots of positive suggestions for improvements.

The parliament was led by the President Jo Critcher who spoke confidently about the issues and eloquently answered questions on a range of issues in a most persuasive way.

The next round of Student Union elections was also launched with eight roles on offer.

Congratulations to former Langley College Sports student Harry Smith who has been appointed as the new Manager for Absolutely Fitness who operate the College's sports facilities.

Harry's a great example of how students studying at Langley get the skills and qualifications they need to successfully progress on to meaningful careers in their chosen profession. Harry will now be working for Absolutely Fitness doing what he was trained to do here at Langley!

Not only that – Harry will be working in sports facilities which have been recognised as among the national best. The gym recently reached the finals of the National Fitness Awards, which recognise achievement and excellence in all corners of the fitness industry.

The judges had high praise describing the College as "a fantastic college gym that benefits the whole community."

To find out more go to

Students from Langley College were given a unique insight in fighting hate following a visit from Mike Haines from Global Acts of Unity. Mike delivered two powerful sessions, inspiring students to make positive changes in their behaviour and attitudes.

Mike set up Global Acts of Unity in order to take a stand against hate following the death of his younger brother David Haines, a British Aid worker in Syria, who was murdered by ISIS. Mike, who dedicates his time to meeting young people across the country, said: “If I hate the people who killed my brother, they win. I will not let hatred enter my life. I will fight to my dying breath against the fear and discord they seek to instil in us. This is now my path in life. This is why I created Global Acts of Unity.”

Students attended Mike’s session which they described as emotionally exhausting, uplifting and thought-provoking. Commenting on the experience Tutor Joanne Fyfe said: “Students left the session inspired and invigorated to make a positive change. Mike’s story has had a profound effect on all who were fortunate to attend. The power of Mike’s words will reverberate with our students for a long time to come and the over-riding message is one of hope; that together we can overcome division and hatred.”

Long after Mike’s session had ended, students were keen to continue talking about what they had experienced and how it made them feel, reflecting on what they themselves will now do differently.

Mike visits schools and college to share his powerful message. He shows how by reaching out and talking to someone from a different faith or background, the walls that terrorists seek to build can be broken down. “If each and every one of us can open our minds, hearts and arms to other communities we do not understand, then we can only grow closer and our resistance to intolerance and hate grows stronger,” he said.

For more information:

Slough Aspire, one of the country's most innovative training and development projects, is celebrating five years of creating jobs, training solutions and partnerships. Friends, partners and beneficiaries gathered last week to mark the occasion and celebrate the Centre’s work which has positively impacted the people and businesses of Slough and the wider Berkshire community.

Opening the event with a look back at their achievements and highlighting the positive impact Slough Aspire has had on the local area Fiona Jones, Chief Executive said: “Over the past five years, we have delivered hundreds of events that have helped local people get jobs, develop new skills, start or grow businesses and find out more about the world of work. We’ve done this through building constructive partnerships with local organisations and bringing business engagement to their valuable work. By putting business at the heart of what we do, Slough Aspire works as a conduit for skills and employment between the business and resident populations in Slough with the Aspire Centre as a hub.”

The Centre’s long list of achievements are impressive, welcoming 15,536 visitors; engaging with over 400 local businesses committed to improving skills for Slough; enhancing 4,601 training and development interventions for unemployed residents; enabling 15,537 young people to engage directly with business professionals to improve careers awareness and raise aspirations; contributing to the creation of over 40 new company start-ups; and, supporting 2,483 local business professionals through workforce development, networking and recruitment services.

Commenting on the growth of the private public partnership, Kate Webb Chair of the Slough Aspire Board of Directors and CEO of The Windsor Forest Colleges Group said: “The commitment to partnership and community integration has paid off for Slough Aspire with the investment from SEGRO and our colleges group cementing this success. Slough Aspire isn’t by itself, it is part of the community and if it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a town to develop skills for its people. Slough Aspire is a nexus for that but it doesn’t do that alone, we all do that together.”

A number of leading organisations joined the celebrations and shared their stories of how Slough Aspire has provided support and solutions to skills gaps for businesses and residents’ skills including: Andrew Hogger, Managing Director of Universal Security, Tim Smith, Chief Executive of Thames Valley Berkshire LEP, Brian Murphy, lead for the East Berkshire Executive Job Club, Natalia Orlowska, Aspire Centre Apprentice, James Swindlehurst, Leader of Slough Borough Council, and, Gareth Osborn, Regional Unit Director for SEGRO Plc.

Closing the event with birthday cake, guests took the opportunity to consider the Slough Aspire’s future success with Gareth Osborn commenting: “The Trading Estate is full of SMEs and what Slough Aspire enables those companies to do is connect people for employment and also train people up. A lot of SMEs do not have the right skills but this network gives you contacts in a whole range of people or skills, and I think it’s a really important part of enabling the future. It’s an obligation for us to try and inspire people through this forum, for businesses to get actively involved and inspire young people.”

To find out more about upcoming events and projects at Slough Aspire or how your business can benefit from support with workforce development, apprenticeships, recruitment and corporate social responsibility please contact Fiona Jones, Chief Executive of Slough Aspire via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

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