Coleg y Cymoedd has invested more than £1.4m in major upgrades to its building services and motor vehicle facilities, boosting employment and training opportunities for learners in the Caerphilly County Borough.
The investments, located at the college’s Ystrad Mynach campus, include a brand new two-storey building services training and assessment centre, which will benefit hundreds of young people on a variety of courses within the building services industry including those studying gas training, water regulations and renewable energy.
The new facility, equally joint funded by Coleg y Cymoedd and Welsh Government, will feature purpose-built workshops complete with a range of modern equipment for learners to gain practical experience and develop their skills, including central heating boilers, gas cookers and electric fires.
As well as gas and electric facilities, the new building will host a large plastering workshop on the ground floor, allowing the college to expand its these provisions. At the same time, the relocation of the building services department has also enabled Coleg y Cymoedd to expand and upgrade its brickwork, electrical installation and plumbing facilities.
In addition to the £1.4m centre, more than £35,000 has also been invested in upgrading equipment at the campus’ motor school to expand its already well-equipped workshop and provide learners with access to up to date vehicle technology and repair practices.
These investments include the replacement of several of the department’s existing cars with newer models, as well as the purchase of three new vehicles equating to £24,000. The upgrades are set to provide a broad variety of vehicles for learners to practice on in a real-life workshop environment.
With plans to deliver hybrid vehicle courses by 2020, the college has spent £6,000 on state-of-the-art training equipment in this field, which will also benefit current courses at the college which already incorporate hybrid elements.
College principal Judith Evans said:
“These investments demonstrate the college’s commitment to continually improving our provisions to meet the needs of the industry and employers, ensuring the delivery of top class further education to Caerphilly and further beyond.
“The new training centre at Ystrad will provide essential support for the building services sector and enable us to expand our provisions in a number of areas including brickwork, plumbing and electrical installation – specific trades that have been identified as areas of growth in the Cardiff Capital Region Employment and Skills Plan. Similarly our improvements to the motor vehicle workshop will equip learners with practical skills they will require in a real-life working environment, while the new hybrid technologies highlight exciting possibilities for new courses and developments in the years to come.
“This is yet another example of Coleg y Cymoedd’s continued support for the construction and automotive sectors, as well as the local and wider economy.”
Work on the motor vehicle improvements have been completed while the new training and assessment centre for building services will be open for use in September 2018.