Government Minister Nick Boles has praised the City of Bath College for helping local schoolchildren to make informed choices about their future careers.
Mr Boles, Minister of State for Skills and Equalities, was full of praise for the College’s careers advisors who help to boost young people’s chances of getting jobs.
The Conservative MP said the College’s strong links with secondary schools across Bath and North East Somerset meant young people were getting the best possible advice.
College careers advisors go into secondary schools to give impartial and confidential careers advice in a bid to widen the horizons of teenagers.
The careers focus comes amid concerns that large numbers of children are currently leaving school without a job or college place.
Mr Boles said it was important for children to be given all their options and know job requirements before selecting their GCSE options.
He said: “What’s great here at this college is that they are actually running careers advice in local schools.
“The rest of the country has a lot to learn from what is happening in Bath, which I think is a very successful model.
“The relationship between Bath College and schools means that young people in Bath probably get better advice than most in the country.”
He said City of Bath College was leading the way and asked: “How do I get others to do what you do here in Bath?”
Mr Boles was given a tour of City of Bath College by Principal Matt Atkinson.
He visited the £200,000 Rotork Engineering Suite to talk to apprentices, and also met third year BSc computing students and visiting teachers from the Shanghai Jiguang Polytechnic College.
Mr Boles asked several students why they had chosen their courses. He encouraged them to go back to their former schools to inspire students with their own stories. He said: “Young people will listen to you and learn from you.”
Mr Boles also posed for his signature selfie with a group of engineering apprentices and tweeted the picture just hours later.
He said: “The College is a fantastic example of further education working in the interests of the community.
“It was a pleasure to see how students could gain the skills needed to ensure they get jobs at local companies.”
Media students interviewed the Minister and filmed his visit as part of their work experience partnership with the Bath Chronicle.
They quizzed him on further education budget cuts and access to apprenticeships for young people.
Level 3 Moving Image student Thomas Jones, 21, said: “It was interesting to be able to meet and interview the Minister. It was a good experience and helped with our learning.
“It’s good that he recognised the work we put in at the college to help create a better education system. It’s nice to be praised by a politician; it shows we are doing well.”
Mr Boles was accompanied by prospective Conservative MP Ben Howlett.