Students – choosing to go to a Career College

Career Colleges are a new concept in education, with employers taking a leading role in designing and delivering the curriculum.
At a Career College, hands-on practical training is combined with academic teaching. You will learn through practical experiences, projects set by employers and of course, quality work experience opportunities.
Different Career Colleges have different specialisms, but all are linked to industries that are in need of a well-skilled future workforce.
You can therefore be assured that there will be a range of job opportunities available in your chosen specialism when the time comes to progress out of education and into the world of work.
Our overarching aim is to ensure that as a Career College student, you are equipped with the necessary skills and hands-on experience to take your next step to a successful career.
A Career College offers:

  • Exciting, innovative and active learning, relating directly to real ‘work’
  • High quality teaching from qualified staff in core academic areas (including GCSE English, Maths and Sciences at Key Stage 4 for 14–16-year-olds)
  • Prestigious coaching and industry expertise within each vocational specialism
  • Industry-standard facilities and resources to aid your learning
  • Personalised learning to suit your individual skills and interests
  • Excellent links with local employers
  • A clear line of sight to the world of work and your future career
  • Help to develop essential employability skills
  • High quality careers education and advice
  • The expectation that on completion of your course, you will progress into either employment, an apprenticeship or further/higher education
  • Opportunities to meet and connect with other young people in Career Colleges around the country
  • Expert support, advice and mentoring to expand your horizons and encourage aspiration
  • A selection process which ensures all students have enthusiasm and aptitude for their chosen programme of study – as well good, all-round attainment

What our students have to say:

The Air and Defence Career College has given me a route straight to the exciting career I wanted. It’s given me the confidence and leadership skills to pass the tests first time and get straight in – I’m just so happy.”
Kieron Davies – Air and Defence Career College, Lincoln
“Working with James and Chris was a brilliant experience and I learned a lot last night. I am absolutely sure I want a career in this industry, in a front of house role, and studying at this Career College is giving me the chance to learn all the skills I know I will need.”
Lauren Polson – Hospitality, Food and Enterprise Career College, London South East Colleges
“The Career College has helped me to get the apprenticeship I’ve wanted. “It has got me to a place skills-wise where I can do what I want and to a good standard in many things, including welding, which I wouldn’t have got at a school. “For five years I’ve been hoping to take this route and I’m looking forward to what lies ahead.”
Jordan Weatherburn – Career College North East
“What I liked the best about Hugh Baird’s Career College was the way it helped me develop and really prepare for a career in the Travel Industry. “I gained lots of experience of dealing with the public while working College events. This really helped me grown in confidence and gave me instances I could refer to when I went for my interviews with airlines.”
Aaron Pickford – Hospitality & Visitor Economy Career College, Hugh Baird College (now working for British Airways)
“I’m very happy to be part of the first cohort of Northumberland Career College students. “The course has opened my eyes to what else is out there. I’ve always wanted to work with animals and for all that hasn’t changed, I now know so much more about the industry and feel more confident venturing into different parts of it. How many people can say they will gain three qualifications in one year and have as much work experience?”
Nathan Thewlis – Land-Based Rural Tourism, Northumberland Career College
“Learning has actually been fun, I’ve really enjoyed it. I’m going on to a Level 3 programme and feel the Career College has prepared me very well my next step. I wouldn’t have been able to take such a broad curriculum at school or benefited from such good teaching and facilities.”
Luke Ward (16) – Career College North East
“Engaging with employers at this stage of education is invaluable. It gives us an insight into the world of employment and helps to prepare us for the future. Career College has also created great opportunities for me to showcase my talents and network with industry specialists”
Romi Patel – Digital and Creative Career College, Harrow

Founder Members and Trustees
Trustees and founder members are the Edge Foundation and Helping Hands Trust.
Helping Hands
Established since 2008, Helping Hands Trust supports both individuals, particularly young people, and causes in the UK and abroad. It assists those suffering or in need because of financial hardship, sickness, disability or distress to advance their education and personal achievements. Through its sponsorship of Career Colleges Trust, Helping Hands is seeking to increase and widen its impact on advancing education and life opportunities for young people.
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The Edge Foundation
The Edge Foundation is an independent education charity. It is dedicated to raising the status of technical, practical and vocational learning. All young people should have the opportunity to achieve their potential and the UK’s future workforce needs to be equipped with the skills to be successful in the modern, global economy. Edge believes that “learning by doing” should be valued equally with academic learning and that all learners should experience a mix of both. There are many paths to success.
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Student Factsheets

Click links below to download PDF factsheets.