PRC Local Residents
Upcoming events happening at the College
PRC has circa 9000 students, over 850 staff and delivers a bewildering variety of courses for learners aged 14 to 90. On a typical day, a walk through the College will reveal everything from animal husbandry students feeding marmosets to budding engineers using a wind tunnel to explore aerodynamics. The majority of our learners study vocational programmes leading directly to skilled jobs in Peterborough. But we also have over 800 students on undergraduate degree programmes at our University Centre (the yellow building), nearly 1000 apprentices working in local business and, in our main building, we have some of the best facilities in the region to allow severely disabled learners to achieve their goals. From September 2016, our newest addition, the Greater Peterborough University Technical College (the grey building) will open its doors to 14-19 year olds. The GPUTC aims to be the choice for engineers, builders, designers and architects of the future and to provide them with a world class technical education We are proud to be sponsors of the GPUTC alongside other academic and business partners.
With such a busy and vibrant college on your doorstep, you will rightly want to know exactly what we’re doing to minimise noise. I think we have some positive news here because this year we invested over £8000 on sound proofing the main hall alone. We’re also changing the way we do business; since August this year, I personally approved (or declined) every request for a weekend event. What I’m trying to balance are the benefits we provide to the local community by making a high quality venue available to them at an affordable price against the noise these events can create. We restrict the hours, reduce the activities and, ultimately, decline events that would cross that line.
A small minority of students do not arrive with the skills and behaviours required to be successful in life and work; we find ourselves having to manage some very challenging issues. I’m not complaining – it’s part of our job. I do not tolerate littering, bullying, bad language, drug use or other anti-social traits within College bounds and our security team, with the support of all staff, bear down hard on offenders. Outside our boundaries, I have no authority but we do work very closely with the City Council and the Police to influence behaviour, identify miscreants and follow up where student involvement is evident. This month alone, I led a team of litter pickers to clean up the alleyway opposite the Eastfield Road entrance, we passed several files containing video evidence of criminal behaviour to the police, we gained agreement that police patrols will be stepped up in the Eastfield Road vicinity and the City Council’s youth engagement team will get involved.
Latest Updates – 12 August 2016
The College is strangely quiet at the moment as we gear up for the new term beginning on 12th September. For our tutors, this means some well-earned leave, but for some of our staff it’s the busiest time of the year as they carry out essential maintenance and improvements that just cannot be done whilst the students are in residence.
In early August, we were handed the keys to our new Food Centre of Excellence. This facility will prepare operators and technicians to work in the food processing industry, a key part of our region’s economy. It incorporates a state of the art food production line that will operate twice a week. The building isn’t visible from outside the site and complies with the strictest emission regulations so I don’t think you’ll be aware of its presence unless you know one of the students who’ll benefit from the very modern training it will provide.
Did you know that we have a modern and very well-equipped fitness centre on our site? Open to members of the public outside of normal College hours, the Lifestyle Fitness Centre has one of the lowest charges for gym membership in Peterborough. We’re exploring the idea of expanding the opening hours to make it more accessible to local residents. Would this make a difference to you? I’d love to know if it would. A potential disadvantage might be an increase in traffic on Eastfield Road; on the other hand, by expanding the opening hours, fewer people would be driving in and out during the peak rush hour periods of 0730-0900 and 1700-1830. We’ve commissioned a traffic survey later this year to see what the facts are and may submit a planning application in due course in the usual way so that everybody can express their views. In the meantime, if you have any comment on this, supportive or otherwise, do please let us know.
And finally, September will see the opening of Peterborough’s newest secondary school on our campus. The Greater Peterborough University Technical College will welcome 140 students aged 14-19 year who will study engineering and construction alongside core GCSEs. Every student is guaranteed a job interview at the end of their studies by one of the sponsors: Anglia Ruskin University; Caterpillar Perkins; Anglian Water; Larkfleet Homes; Marshalls Aerospace; and of course PRC. This is a great addition to the City and one that I know you will welcome.