Access and Participation Statement 2018-19
Mont Rose College is an independent Higher Education Provider. We are committed to providing high quality life-enhancing education and excellent student experience to all our students at all levels. The College takes special care with regard to individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds or with protected characteristics (as defined by the Equality Act 2010). We have a designated team which works to assist and support prospective HE students at all stages along their journey into education. The Welfare Officers, Student Mentors and members of Student Services are assigned to assist those students who declare special needs or any sort of disability. Student Services and Welfare Officers help students requiring special assistance to access funding for their courses or Disability Allowance. The College provides pastoral support through mentoring and tutorial programmers. The mentoring programmes are monitored by the Academic/ Quality Assurance Board to ensure that all identified needs have been met.
The College uses HESA data; TEF metrics; DHLE; NSS to evaluate and compare its performance with other providers and to identify areas which require improvement. The current data shows that our students are highly satisfied with teaching, assessment feedback and academic support. In all these categories the students rated the College well above the benchmark set by TEF. This was achieved by providing students with opportunities for research, practical experience, work placements and also by helping students in their personal and professional development. The most recent NSS results show that the students are highly satisfied with the College operations. The College received 98% overall student satisfaction.
According to the recent TEF data, the College achieved 92.1% core value for “employment and further study”, which is 0.8% higher than the benchmark. The College wants to do more to help students from all backgrounds to get into employment. Therefore, the College regularly arranges visits of Recruiting Agencies like REED, Adecco, Education Future etc to provide students information about the job opportunities available in the various employment markets.
In January 2018 the College introduced the “Mont Rose Angels” programme. It is a business plan competition to encourage current students to learn about starting a new business. The participating students will receive mentoring from industry specialists and will then present the final plan in front of a panel of judges. The judges will be comprised of entrepreneurs, business development experts and government officials from within and outside the College.
The programme will last for six months and will cost the College around £20,000. The purpose of initiating this programme is to improve the employability of the students. At the end of the programme, the College will conduct a survey to analyse the results and consider the option either to run it annually or introduce alternative programmes.
The students also have an opportunity to attend workshops arranged by the National Career Service twice a month. Students work on perfecting their CVs and improving interviewing skills. Mont Rose College has established its own Employability Centre inside the College. The Employability Centre staff arranges for the students to attend a range of job fairs and also continue to offer placements to our students for them to gain practical experience.
The assigned staff is continually looking to find suitable employment/ work experience or other options to improve the students’ chances of getting into employment after their studies.
The College has recently started developing an online employability platform, which will provide students with valuable sources of information, good practice and other training materials (CV writing, Interview questions, work ethics and so forth). Additionally, the system will send email alerts to students giving relevant subject based job details, once these become available on the Recruitment Agencies Job Database within the chosen geographical radius. Both teachers and students took part in the development and progress of the platform which is now being launched.
The College will also be providing research opportunities to the students after the formation of the MRC Research Centre, which will also enhance their chances of getting a good job.
Most of our students are mature and from disadvantaged backgrounds. The College provides a variety of resources to help the students to progress into employment. We understand that age and limited work experience impacts the type of jobs students are offered after completing their studies. For this reason, we believe, our “highly skilled” employment rate is lower than anticipated. However, the College is working to close this gap as much as possible. Mont Rose College arranges employability training sessions specifically designed for mature people and people with little or no practical work experience in their fields of study. After analysing the relevant metrics we identified that the male students receive less highly skilled job offers than women. It is difficult to explain why women are more successful than men in gaining higher skilled jobs. However, we recognise that such a gap exists and try to close it by organising Employability Training sessions for specific groups of students (males; females; younger students, mature students), where the main emphasis is concentrated on overcoming the issues which are specific to these groups. The students responded that these sessions help them to build confidence and prepared them better for job interviews.
Widening participation is part of the Strategic Plan of MRC. It is enshrined in its founding ethos and strategic plan, because the College has a richly diverse participation profile with regard to male/ female ratio, age profile, ethnic diversity, residence, employment profile and employment history. We have supported students who face temporary financial issues by providing them with zero interest loans.
The college aims are:
The College’s Student Services Department, Admission Department and Employability Centre participate in and undertake activities throughout the year to help students from various backgrounds and groups to access education. The College participates in activities, such as: regional UCAS events, local school events, local council events and events arranged in-house like organising placements for students, inviting industry specialists as guest speakers, encouraging and motivating students to attend relevant international conferences and events. These activities help students to learn about about diverse progression routes available
In the last year the College spent £18000/- on different outreach activities relating to employability of students.
The class schedules are arranged to provide flexibility to the students. The College arranges the programmes in line with school term dates to ensure that local mums can access education while their children are at school and spend the holidays/half terms together with them. The College runs afternoon sessions which are popular among part time employed students.