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Shining a light on the colleges developing the future talent pipeline for hospitality

20 Oct 2020
Andy Doyle, Partnerships Manager, People 1st International

As the government recently set out plans to transform the training and skills system, backed by continued investment in college buildings and facilities, colleges are taking centre focus again this week with the #CollegesWeek campaign celebrating the all the great things that colleges do to support people, grow industries and communities.

Since 2012, we’ve been recognising the best hospitality colleges across the country that are endorsed by a panel of employers as being innovative, flexible and reflecting businesses’ needs – ensuring they are an excellent source of future talent for the industry.

Whilst hospitality businesses are facing the devastating impact of new Covid restrictions, we’re confident that the industry will rebuild itself so we’ll need to fight hard to attract the best talent, and keep it in our sector.

Accredited colleges are full of young, enthusiastic people who want to build a career in hospitality – and they’re continuing to do a fantastic job to raise the profile of our industries whilst businesses confront the disruption caused by Covid, confident that students will be armed with the skills needed to support the industry as it rebuilds.

With over 20 colleges currently recognised through the People 1st International accreditation scheme – we take this opportunity to remind ourselves who the colleges are and why they’ve been endorsed by leading hospitality employers as the best in the country:

Cardiff and Vale College – “The Celtic Manor Resort is extremely pleased to have developed a strategic partnership with CAVC, as we believe that it is essential for the on-going success of the hospitality and tourism industry in Wales that we focus on growing and nurturing the talent of the future.” – Celtic Manor Resort

City of Glasgow College – “We have taken at least one Trainee Manager each year since 2011 and only one has not been offered a permanent position at the Club upon completing their training. That statistic is testament to the education provided by the college and also the work they put into getting their students into the right roles when they graduate.” – Caledonian Club

City College Norwich – “City College is way ahead of any other college any of my colleagues within Kew Green Hotels work with and they constantly provide excellent students for the workforce.” – Kew Green Hotels Ltd

Coleg Cambria – “It was an amazing experience to work with the guys at Coleg Cambria; it’s really inspiring to see the future chefs in our amazing industry get excited about the food produced at Ynyshir!” –  Ynyshir restaurant with rooms

Cornwall College – “Long-term connection and support. It’s a great college and place of learning that I wish all the success in the world”– St Ives Harbour Hotel and Spa

Exeter College – “Exeter college restaurant isn’t turning out robots but quality individuals primed for a life in catering – just reward for all their efforts!” – Jack in the Green

Fareham College – “Fareham College are always open to new ideas and are very supportive towards my business” – D Towlson​

Hertford Regional College – “Always being involved and working side by side with the college at giving the students a job within our company. Many examples of students who have completed work experience, been offered part-time work and are still with us.”– McMullens

Hopwood Hall College – “The college provides motivated and talented students. The attitudes and ethics instilled at the college ensure students are rounded and ready for the workplace.” – Vicki Bailey

London South East Colleges – “Its good for us to build strong links with a local college which can provide a talent pipeline for the future.” – Harrison Catering

Milton Keynes College – “Simply put, I feel the calibre of students at MK College are at an exceptional standard and it excites me for the future of food.” – Eat with Spencer

New City College – “It fills me with confidence that colleges like Redbridge are providing the kind of skilled technicians they are to help try and plug the current skills shortage and I hope others can follow their lead.” – ELIOR UK

Newcastle College – “A lovely hidden secret of the city and a fantastic opportunity to support young people (and enjoy some great food at the same time!)” – Restaurant customer

Peterborough Regional College – “The students’ attitude and skills are a real credit to the college…I would not hesitate to employ them in the future.” – Royal Automobile Club Woodcote Park

Runshaw College – “Their theory knowledge of products and exceptional service standards are incredible. Foxholes students are above the mill for their passion, skill and knowledge of a variety of aspects of the industry.” – Stoneygate Pubs

Shrewsbury College – “It definitely is a place of excellence, giving us an open forum with some really great talent.” – Chris Burt

Cheshire Colleges – South & West – “…the best bit is the way they support their learners and us as employers and the ease at which this all takes place.” – Brunning & Price

The Sheffield College – “They have excellent facilities, excellent tutors and a good standard of students that leave for work.”– Chris Mapp

Trafford College – “I did a dinner for 50 people involving all the students and lecturers cooking our restaurant menu and i found the ability and skill level to be some of the best in the country from a college standpoint.” – Mark Greenaway

Truro and Penwith College – “Every learner is different, has different skills sets, confidence levels and abilities however, every student comes to us motivated, excited and keen to do a good job.” – The Headland Hotel

University College Birmingham (College of Food) – “Everyone we take from UCB has a good work ethic, and that in turn makes them a pleasure to train and work alongside.” – Dunraven Arms Hotel

West Suffolk College – “We have been fortunate enough to secure the employment of a number of their former hospitality pupils, these individuals have proven to be some of the hardest working, dedicated and professional members of our team.” – Bedford Lodge Hotel

Westminster Kingsway College – “Westminster Kingsway College already have a great reputation for the delivery of excellent hospitality training and this has been reinforced by my experience, and that of our apprentice, throughout the duration of his course.” – Special Forces Club

With these colleges at the centre of growing and supporting the hospitality industry, we’re proud to be working with employers to recognise the fantastic work they are doing to continue to produce the best students and cultivate their passion for the industry.

For more information on our network of accredited colleges visit

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