As part of Global Enterprise Week, the College of Haringey Enfield and North East London invited business owner Gabrielle Phillips to talk to Hair and Beauty students about starting their own business.

Gabrielle, the founder of a business called Wig Wash and Drop, hosted seminars on what it takes to create a business in the hairdressing sector, at both our Tottenham and Enfield centres. She gave a motivational speech about her journey and what it takes.

Gabrielle said “We offer a range of services at Wig Wash and Drop. We revive all wigs, both synthetic and human hair, hair bundles and hair extensions. The simple three-step process makes it easy for customers to drop off their wigs, have them refurbished or cleaned and pick them up.

“Coming in and talking to the students today was really fun. It’s nice to give back and share my knowledge with the students. It felt good to share my experiences and journey and hopefully I can help someone else start their own business.”

Inspired by Gabrielle’s talk, the classes had shared ideas and had discussions that sparked good plans for future businesses. This was the aim of the seminar as part of Global Enterprise Week, a week of global events aimed to inspire and create awareness of entrepreneurship.

Organiser of the seminar, Louise Webber, said, “Sessions like this are key for our students, to motivate them and give them honest and vital information needed to succeed in the real world. The students were really engaged and I know they took a lot away from Gabrielle.”

On 22 January 2020, the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London, a leading provider of accountancy training, hosted over 120 prospective students at Make Your Future Count – its accounting apprenticeships and careers conference.

The half-day event brought together local employers and household names, including CIMA, CIPFA, the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, BKL Chartered Accountants, Haringey Council, Adroit Accountax and AAT – the world’s leading professional body for accounting technicians.

Opening the conference, Robin Hindley, Interim Deputy Principal of CONEL, said: “Our aim today is to inspire the next generation of star accountants. CONEL’s accountancy faculty is one of the college’s shining stars and we hope that you’ll want to enrol here to start your accountancy career.”

Sarah Ebanja, Chief Executive of the Spurs Foundation (Tottenham Hotspur football club’s award-winning charitable body) and a Governor of the Capital City College Group, said: “When you are in an apprenticeship and linked to an employer, what you are doing is contributing and really making a difference every day, not only for yourself but for your community.

“CONEL is the club’s local college and what’s really important at CONEL is not just what goes on at the front of the classroom; there’s lots of support as well that enables the learner to get the best out of their course.”

Leadership Through Sport & Business (LTSB) is a social mobility charity that prepares and supports bright young people from disadvantaged backgrounds into meaningful roles with major firms. They have worked with CONEL for a number of years and Catherine Gurner (Employment consultant) and Kevser Kilinc (she studied at CONEL and found work through us and LTSB), both spoke at the conference.

Kevser and Catherine

Catherine told us: “Part of what we at LTSB believe in so much through the charity, is that we really can make a difference to young people.” Kevser, who is now a financial analyst at Redington, said, “When coming to CONEL, you’re coming into a huge amount of support that becomes your second family. They’re forever there to contact and they work 24/7 to get you that job.”

The conference aimed to inspire the next generation of young accountants, so the programme included talks and sessions from current and ex-CONEL students. Level 2 AAT Accountancy student Arun Singh, said: “When I was looking for a college to study at, CONEL stood out to me and now I am here, I’ve learnt a lot about accounting and work life. I have also learnt a lot about myself and how to change myself to become a professional in this industry. If you have a head for figures then a career in accounting could be for you.”

Our courses and apprenticeships will provide you with the skills and experience you need to get the best possible start in London’s financial world, whether you want to be a high-flyer in the city or managing the books for local businesses.

Before Christmas, the Metropolitan Police visited the College of Haringey Enfield & North East London’s Tottenham and Enfield Centres to deliver their Makepeace session as part of our Young Londoners Fund programme.

Makepeace is a presentation delivered by specially trained Metropolitan Police firearms officers to young people aged 11 and above, on the consequences of youth violence. Makepeace is designed for young adults growing up in London and provides an opportunity to discuss this vital issue and build trust between them and the police.

The sessions covered a number of topics such as the causes and consequences of youth violence, discussion of real-life case studies, footage from live incidents, basic first aid, how young people can help stop the violence and the work of Specialist Firearms Command (SCO19) in London.

Organiser of the event and CONEL’s Head of Learner Experience and Industry Placements, Anthony Robinson, said, “Sessions like this are great for two reasons. Firstly, they build a relationship between the young people who take part and the police who deliver them. Secondly, they spread awareness of not only the great work the Metropolitan police do but also the horrible effects that knife and gun crime have on the community. The sessions were a great success and all of the students gained something from them.”

Both sessions had the groups fully engaged and got great feedback. Sports Level 3 student Kay Kyprianou, said: “I thought it was very informative. I think statistically it was shocking to see the level of crime and the effects these crimes have on people and their families. It made us more aware of the problems that crimes like this cause on a larger scale.”

Al Campbell, who led the session, said: “It was great to have the opportunity to come down and speak to the students of CONEL. As armed officers we are on the frontline of dealing with knife crime and its victims. Throughout our presentation we use real life case studies and operational footage to deliver a message with an impact around the ongoing issue of serious youth violence and how we can work together to try and prevent it.”

If you would like to find out more about the Makepeace sessions, please click here.

On 9 December 2019, the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London welcomed a class of foreign-exchange make-up students and celebrity make-up artist Liz Martins to its Tottenham Centre near Seven Sisters.

As part of a recurring cultural exchange with the college, around 30 Japanese students were invited to explore the differences and similarities of the English teaching system.

With The Salon, its industry-standard studios, and training workshops on-site, the college was the perfect place to start for our guests, who also benefited from a demonstration with celebrity make-up artist Liz Martins.

Liz’s portfolio spans 20 years and has seen her working across a range of palettes and genres, including editorial, beauty, advertising and celebrity. Known for her work in fashion (including for fashion royalty Kate Moss, Helena Christensen and Eva Herzigova) and music, Liz demonstrated make-up in a western ‘music video’ style for the exchange students and a class of CONEL students, before she opened the floor to questions.

Liz said: “It’s a hard industry to get into and one that takes a lot of work. I started in 1995, back when it was a very small industry. It was the dawn of the celebrity make-up artist – people like Pat McGrath and Mary Greenwell – but very undercurrent. That’s what made me want to get into it.

“I was very into art. I loved to draw and wanted to get into graphic design. It’s hard to find a way to make money out of art. Computers and maths didn’t take me but I had an affinity with fashion.

“I took a short course and started assisting. If you want to get into fashion, it’s imperative you go and assist. I started painting toenails. I hate feet. But it was anything to get on that Fashion Week team.

“From there I started working with the Spice Girls, and then Girls Aloud. Now I work with Rita Ora. In editorial I work with Vogue, which is very different to what’s expected from music. But it all started with assisting.”

Liz’s demonstration explored some of the differences between skin tones, face shape and trends, replicating some of the vibrant styles of this year’s London Fashion Week.

“It’s important to develop your own style and have some fun with make-up. Relax. I try to collect references from everywhere. I took a lot of inspiration from David Bowie’s make-up in the 1970s, but I’ll also read wildlife books and, of course, fashion magazines. Find what works for you and don’t be afraid to get creative.”

As part of the visit, students later moved to the MAC flagship store on Carnaby Street where they found out more about the world of beauty.

CONEL’s Head of School for Hair and Beauty, Ann Atkin, said, “It’s important that students have the opportunity to experience diversity of thought and practice in their studies. Our guests were interested to learn how to apply make-up on unfamiliar skin tones and saw a number of new, western practices. It is also important for our students to exchange ideas and understand the differences in training and client expectations in other countries. External relationships are vital in giving students a greater understanding of the wider industry.”

Back in July 2019, the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London entered their first ever student from its Mixed Martial Arts Academy into a boxing bout.

Jan Szponarski, a Sports Level 2 Diploma student at CONEL in Enfield, joined the MMA Academy with no previous competitive fighting experience, but after a year and a half of training and hard work, Head Coach Alay Asghar decided he was ready to face an opponent in the octagon for the first time.

Alay Asghar has been in the world of MMA for 14 years, working at CONEL for the last three of those as the MMA Academy’s Head Coach. From competitor to coach, Alay has learnt a lot during his time in the sport. He says, “There is a big misconception that MMA is all about promoting violence and fighting.  However, it is actually a great way to help the students channel their aggression within a controlled environment.” Alay credits the MMA Academy with helping Jan channel his energy and says that it has also “instilled discipline and character into him”.

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is a full-contact combat sport that allows punching, hitting and grappling – both standing and on the ground – using techniques from different combat sports and martial arts, including boxing, Muay Thai, kickboxing, judo, karate and taekwondo. The CONEL MMA Academy currently has 28 students in its programme.

To find out more about Jan, Alay and the MMA Academy at CONEL, and about Jan’s spectacular success in the bout, watch our video here:

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