Students shared their views on tackling racism with a black Metropolitan Police officer during a series of events at Capital City College Group (CCCG) to mark Black History Month.

Inspector Chris Excell, who has served the Met for 15 years, was among the guests invited to give talks to students at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL).

Insp Excell shared his experience of being a black police officer, a brief history of black police officers in Britain and his role as the Chair of the Black Police Association at the Met.

Students at CONEL also heard from Corporal Nyerere St John who spoke about being a black soldier in the British Army and gave his advice on careers in the Armed Forces.

There were also talks and presentations on black history, the slave trade, Marie Seacole, black Olympians, black footballers, black scientists and inventors, black hair and beauty, black music and the screening of a documentary on the Windrush generation.

Metropolitan Police Inspector Chris Excell, who is also a member of the Metropolitan Black Police Association (MBPA), spoke to students at The College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London, about his career and how former members of the MBPA have strived to carve and strengthen their place as part of the public services. ‘We are black all year round,’ said Excell. ‘Black History Month is really a time to celebrate, come together and not be the only person in the room to celebrate each other.” Find out more about courses we have that will support your future your career joining the public services by visiting www.capitalccg.ac.uk

City and Islington College (CANDI) hosted a Chat and Chillax session where students took part in a discussion about Black History Month, what it means to them, why it is important and ways to tackle racism in society.

Students also participated in workshops where they wrote positive affirmations to promote more tolerance in society on leaf-shaped pieces of paper that were then stuck to a large picture of a ‘tree of hope’ for their peers to read.

Among the uplifting messages placed on the tree were ‘Everyone is allowed to live freely’, ‘Respect each other’, ‘Love each other’ and ‘Educate ourselves and others.’

The atrium at Westminster Kingsway College’s King’s Cross Centre was adorned with flags from countries around the world to represent the diversity of its staff and students.

Students heard talks from guest speakers from BAME backgrounds including entrepreneur Tlwalola Ogunles, youth mentor Luke Malillah, actor and presenter Jordan Kensington, social mobility advocate Kevin Osei, property investor TJ Atkinson and WestKing administrator Lorna Blackman.

They were also encouraged to read books by black authors in the college’s Learning Resource Centre including Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman, Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams and Slay in Your Lane by Elizabeth Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinené.

There were screenings off Becoming, the documentary on life of former US First Lady Michelle Obama, and Rocks, a drama about a black teenage girl and her brother in Hackney whose mum abandons them, forcing them to try and avoid being taken into social care.

Music students also put on live performances of their own songs inspired by black music.

CCCG runs many enrichment activities across its three colleges for students personal and professional development. Find out more about Student Life at CONEL here.

With the academic year well under way, Year 11 students are now settling into their final year of school and knuckling down ahead of their GCSEs next summer.

Many will also be thinking about their future, and it is important for them to realise that staying on at school sixth form is not the only or always the best option.

Here’s six fantastic reasons why they should choose the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) over school when it comes to taking the next step in their education.

  • A bigger choice of qualifications and pathways – Whether you want to take the academic or technical route to university or employment we have the right course for you. Choose from A Levels, BTEC and City & Guilds diplomas and certificates, apprenticeships with top employers, along with our first T Levels.
  • A huge range of subjects – We offer A Levels with City and Islington College along with courses in accounting and business, IT, creative media, construction, childcare, engineering, hair and beauty, music and performing arts, public services, science and sport.
  • Students are treated like adults – There’s no ‘Yes Sir’ or ‘Yes Miss’ here. Students are often on first name terms with the teachers and given the personal responsibility for getting their work assignments done. Of course, we will still encourage, motivate and support our students to succeed.
  • Make new friends – A chance to widen your social circle and get to know more people. The more you broaden your horizons, the more opportunities that are presented to you in work and life.
  • Industry experienced teachers – Many of our lecturers and tutors have worked in the fields they teach and are able to share first-hand knowledge and experience to give students the professional skills and realistic expectations of their future careers.
  • Fantastic enrichment and support – Students benefit from a more rounded education including trips at home and abroad, talks from industry experts, debates and workshops, competitions, community projects, sports, clubs and societies, careers advice and support with UCAS applications.

DON’T FORGET OUR OPEN DAY

Book your place at our Tottenham and Enfield Centres on Saturday 5 November from 10am to 1pm. Book a place at our Open Day here and apply for our courses and apprenticeships here.

Competitive computer gaming, known as esports, is one of the fastest growing sports globally. At the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) we run esports courses and an Esports Enrichment Programme at our Enfield Centre. Here, our newly appointed esports coach Finlay Stewart shares his passion for gaming and how it can help students’ education.

Tell us about your esports journey.

I graduated from university in 2015 and went straight into esports. Since then, I’ve worked many different jobs in the industry from sales executive to managing and coaching teams. I’ve worked as an esports coach for the past seven years with some of the best players and teams from around the globe and also at grassroots level. I’m very excited about our project here at CONEL.

What was your first game console and the first game you played?

I had a Nintendo Game Boy when I was around six years old. My first game was Pokémon Yellow – a classic! Soon after that I got into PlayStation and PC gaming.

What do you enjoy most about playing esports?

I enjoy the social aspect. Playing videogames is great fun on your own but even better with friends or family, especially when you’re all working together towards a goal. These days I rarely play online games on my own.

Tell us about the Esports Enrichment Programme at CONEL.

The Esports Enrichment Programme brings gamers together to play, train and have fun. At the college’s Enfield centre, students have access to 20 powerful gaming rigs and compete against gamers from other schools and colleges in the British Esports Student Champs competition each week. Games include Valorant, League of Legends, FIFA and Rocket League. For the past three years the college team, CONEL Cyphers, have been consistently placed in the top four teams in the country.

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Join the Esports Academy!

Join up with CONEL Cyphers, CONEL’s official esports team, and compete with other students against colleges from around the country. If you’re not a competitive person, feel free to join up to meet like-minded people and make new friends!
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What skills can you gain playing esports that will benefit your education and career?

Playing in an esports team teaches you many things. First off, it develops your leadership and teamworking skills. It also improves your hand-eye coordination, ability to multitask and your IT, communication and problem-solving skills, to name just a few.

How do you coach someone to be a better gamer?

The way to coach people to be better gamers is the same way you would teach or coach them to do anything really. You find their current level and from there identify their strengths and weaknesses. Teach them to focus on their strengths and work on minimising where they are weak. Show them what they are doing wrong and give them additional areas to work on. The get them to watch back their mistakes and analyse them.

Is gaming still very much a male domain?

It depends on the game in question. Different games have different demographics. For example, mobile gaming is pretty much 50-50 between male and females. Console and PC games are still very male dominated, but some games like Valorant have a huge female player base.

Tell us about the esports courses available at CONEL!

CONEL offers one and two-year esports diploma courses at Level 2 and Level 3, the equivalent of three A Levels, endorsed by the British Esports Association. The courses cover streaming games, tournaments, event planning, game design, video production, coaching and entrepreneurship.

What job opportunities are out there if you become a competent gamer?

The esports industry is expanding at a huge rate and there are many different jobs and roles within the industry. On professional teams you have the pro-players, managers, analysts and coaches, but there are also backroom roles in marketing, sales, HR, merchandising, IT and media.

What do you think of the decision not to include esports in the Commonwealth Games?

It’s disappointing as it had the potential to really raise the profile of esports. I’d like to see it recognised in the Olympic or Commonwealth Games as an actual medal sport. Like any other supports it requires skill, training and commitment to be the best.

What are the side effects of too much gaming and how do you prevent them?

Too much excess of anything is never good. In gaming it can lead to back, neck and wrist problems. The other issues such as headaches are more short term and easier to fix. In general, just don’t overdo it. Take breaks, drink lots of water and eat healthily.

What is a healthy amount of time to spend gaming each week?

I wouldn’t say that there’s a hard limit to the amount of time you spend gaming as long as you are able to meet all your other commitments, get a good eight hours’ sleep, eat well and stay healthy. When it starts to take precedence over everything else, I’d say that’s when it becomes an issue.

What is your best advice on how to become a top esports player?

Play the game. Watch professional players and learn from what they do. At the end of the day, it just comes down to playing more and having the right attitude. Look at your own mistakes and don’t make excuses or blame others. And enrol at CONEL of course!

Find out more about esports courses at CONEL here.

Follow the CONEL Cyphers on Twitter @CONELesports here.

Colleges Week is a celebration of students, staff and skills from 17-21 October #LoveOurColleges

A student has launched his own news and current affairs podcast after studying a free short course at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL).

Hamse Abdilahi set up the The Aliberg Podcast Show as part of his own news website The Ailberg Post after taking an Introduction to Producing Radio Broadcasting course in March.

While studying the course, Hamse secured a grant from Collins Educational Trust in Frome, Somerset, to enable him to purchase a RØDECaster Pro to record his podcast.

So far he has recorded podcasts on How COVID Has Changed Our Public Poilcy Making, My Take on Britain’s Worsening Economic Crisis and Five Lessons Learned from the End of the Elizabethan Era.

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FREE short courses at CONEL

Whether you want to move up in your career, retrain for a new job, try something new, or simply develop your skills in a subject you are interested in, we have the course for you!
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Hamse, who was lives in Southwark, previously studied for a MSc Public Policy at the University of Bristol and later an MSc Sustainable Urban Development at Oxford.

He said: “I have always had a passion for media, even though I never studied journalism at college. It has been a gradual realisation that I should have a career shift to media. The podcast show is my first step, but I hope to have greater media involvement going forward.”

Hamse, who has written numerous news and feature articles including a piece for the Times Educational Supplement on what he learnt from applying to Oxbridge, recently started a Digital Content and Creation free short course at CONEL to further develop his media skills.

“I really enjoyed the radio and podcasting course for two reasons. It was first a short course, which is what I wanted, and secondly, it was both theoretical and practical,” said Hamse.

“The college has a podcast recording studio and was where I first learned how to create a podcast using a RØDECaster Pro, and now I’ve got out of my own. I like the freedom of having my podcast at home and being able to discuss a chosen topic at any time and get my voice heard.”

CONEL offers a wide range of Free Short Courses in various subjects throughout the year with many students taking these courses going on to full-time study. Find out more and book a place here.

Find out more about Digital Media and Creative Computing courses and apply here.

Hundreds of newly enrolled students found out more about college life and the wealth of other support available to them at Freshers Fairs across Capital City College Group (CCCG).

City and Islington College (CANDI), Westminster Kingsway College (WestKing) and the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) all hosted welcome events.

CANDI held a combined fair for students enrolled at its Sixth Form College and Centre for Applied Science along with fairs its Centre for Business, Art and Technology and Centre for Lifelong Learning.

A ‘Welcome Fest’ was held at the WestKing’s King’s Cross Centre and another fair took place at the college’s Soho Centre, and Michelin-star chef Michel Roux welcomed Hospitality and Culinary Arts students to the college’s Victoria Centre.

Among the organisations attending the CANDI and WestKing fairs this year were IMECE, Papyrus, Octopus Communities. Islington Youth Council, NHS, All Change, Lift, Step into Dance, Kooth, We Speak, Brook, Go-Forward Youth, Flint & Flame, The Caterer, Koppert Cress, Compass Group, Arts Emergency and the Craft Guild of Chefs.

CONEL’s Tottenham and Enfield Centres hosted fairs, which included stands from Let’s Talk IAPT, National Citizen Service, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, Metropolitan Police, Proud North London, Pirate.com, Reed Wellbeing, ReachOut, The Rebel School, Pure Gym and Terrence Higgins Trust.

We want to enrich our students’ lives with more than just qualifications. Our aim is to help them develop a broad range of skills and qualities that employers look for, including communication, teamwork and problem-solving, as as well as ensuring they have a great time at college.

Throughout each year CCCG’s colleges run a range of enrichment and extracurricular activities to give them greater insight into their studies and future careers and to support their health and wellbeing, including trips, guest speakers, sports, clubs and societies.

Students can get to know their peers through a range of student-run activities including our Student Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Learner Voice, or college clubs and societies – from football and table tennis to debating and a poetry club.

Students can volunteer to become a Student Ambassador, study buddy or a peer mentor. These important roles help our students develop their confidence and interpersonal skills and look really good on a CV, job application or university application.

Our centres have on-site canteens and cafés, serving a daily menu that includes healthy options. Canteen meals are great value for money and are a good opportunity to relax with friends between lessons. All of our centres have libraries and some have on-site gyms, so you can keep your body fit as well as your mind.

Find out more about Student Life here.

At the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) we believe the cost of living should not come at the cost of your education and job prospects.

That’s why we run FREE short courses throughout the year to enable you to develop new and existing skills for your future regardless of your age or income.

Cost is one of the main barriers to learning and times are extremely tough at the moment, but there has never been a better time to learn or try something new.

Thousands of people have signed up for our FREE short courses since we started running them in 2018 and many have progressed on to full-time study with us.

And what’s more, all our full-time courses up to Level 2 and some at Level 3 are also completely FREE.

Tim Mansfield, 41, took a FREE short course in plumbing followed by a Plumbing Level 2 Diploma after working in the printing trade for more than two decades.

He said: “CONEL’s free short courses were exactly what I needed. They gave me the opportunity to try different trades without having to overcommit until I knew what I wanted to pursue more seriously. If they hadn’t been free, I’m not sure I would have taken the chance.

“The teachers are well-qualified and approachable, and always on hand with advice and support. I’ve made some great friends at CONEL and learnt some great skills that I fully intend to build upon in my future career. I’m excited about starting a new chapter.”

Our FREE short courses are run at our centres and online, in a wide range of subjects:

Find out more by searching FREE short courses and book a place at CONEL.

Book now for our Open Days at our Tottenham and Enfield Centres on Saturday 5 November from 10am to 1pm.

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