Preston College

Sport Students Takeover Leisure Centre

News - Tuesday, 21st April, 2015

Sport student Elliott experiences work at Leisure Centre

Sport student Elliott experiences work at Leisure Centre

Students from Preston’s College swapped the classroom for the workplace after taking over the reins at Leyland Leisure Centre.

The 12-hour takeover gave 11 sports students aged 16-18 the chance to gain a real insight into their future industry and understand the skills required to succeed.

Of the 11 learners taking part, four were invited to apply for vacancies within Leyland Leisure Centre by already possessing skills currently in demand, including gymnastics training and female gym instructors.

One such learner was 16-year-old Elliott Kerrigan, who impressed the centre so much with his positive attitude and ambition that he took centre stage by shadowing the deputy manager.

Elliott, who is currently studying a Level 1 in Sports, said: “The day was totally different than what I expected and I really enjoyed every bit of it.

“I thought we would shadow staff but we were able to get stuck in and do things ourselves such as ordering stock, finance and pool maintenance, which are tasks that I never knew the job involved.”

By stepping into the shoes of the Leisure centre staff, the students were tasked with duties including manning the reception, assisting poolside and the set up and take down of gym equipment.

The takeover day follows the college’s recent partnership with South Ribble Borough Council, which sets out improve the employability of young people in the area.

From September 2015, the new curriculum will combine on-site training and academic teaching, with two days learning at South Ribble Tennis & Fitness Centre and three days commercial experience at Leyland, Bamber Bridge and Penwortham Leisure Centre.

David Smith, head of school for sport, exercise and public services at Preston’s College, said: “The takeover day far exceeded expectations and gave the students a key insight into our new project-based learning programme starting in September.

“We understand the importance of equipping our learners with the skills required to not only get their foot in the door by making them more employable, but also ensuring their long-term success.

“It isn’t just about delivering the necessary academic knowledge and instead we want to ensure our learners are well rounded and can hit the ground running.

“Overall, it was a really positive day with a focus on attitudes and skills as well as future careers.”

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