The Guernsey Institute’s role in the future proofing of Guernsey’s economy is essential to ensure island businesses have staff with the right skills, the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture has said.
The organisation teaches technical skills and delivers vocational training to young learners and those in their later years in our Bailiwick community.
Ranging from leadership and management skills to carpentry, plumbing or welding, The Guernsey Institute is the main provider for technical, vocational, and professional learning in the Bailiwick.
Its key objective is to provide broad student choice, which serve industries across the islands and ensure that our employers have access to suitable employees who are qualified to carry out the work that keeps our island and the economy prosperous.
Deputy Andrea Dudley-Owen (pictured), President of the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture, said: “We know that skilled workers are essential to the future success of our community’s businesses and public sector organisations. We need to be creating skilled workers right here on island. We want to keep as many of our youngsters on island as we can and attract others back.
“To do this we need to offer them the broadest educational choices as well as career opportunities and accommodation. While there will always be a need for employers to bring people to the island to meet specifics needs for their business, we also need to be as self-sufficient as possible. We must “grow our own” if we’re going to achieve that. Our education system, and particularly our post-16 provision, must cater for the demands of our economy and we have to invest in the right type of modern facilities to achieve that.
“The Post-16 Campus will provide authentic workplace facilities for mechanics to learn their trade, for plumbers, carpenters, and decorators to train, and for hair and beauty technicians to practice with real customers. All of this will sit alongside facilities for professional students to learn in a business-style environment and for our sixth formers to study for their academic qualifications and shared learning, sporting, refectory and enrichment spaces.
“Our current facilities are simply not of an acceptable standard and the need for that major investment has been widely understood for years. Globally it is evidenced that investment in skills and education is key for improvement in economic activity. It can also have serious, positive social benefits through better health and reducing contact with the justice system. Overall, better education is a huge advantage to the entire community, and it is so important that we continue with this investment now.”
Jacki Hughes, Executive Principal of The Guernsey Institute, said: “One of thing things that makes our organisation special is the breadth of the provision we have. On Coutanchez Campus, our students are learning tactile skills in workshops, ranging from engineering to carpentry to mechanic work. Meanwhile at the GTA learners are on leadership courses preparing them for senior management roles.
“Skills and vocational learning are something that has, in some people’s eyes, been viewed as the poorer relation, with academic learning being prioritised. In reality, both are equally important. The new model of education we are working towards in Guernsey acknowledges that, and will allow learners pursing skills or academia to flourish, and in doing so, will serve all parts of our community by ensuring we have people with the skills and knowledge to work right across the Bailiwick.”
TGI is made up of the former Guernsey College of Further Education, GTA University Centre and Institute of Health & Social Care Studies, and has brought each of those organisations together to harness their strengths and develop their offerings.
The organisation gives islanders access to a huge range of further and higher education opportunities; from apprenticeships to completing a masters on island, and from accredited business courses to adult evening classes, the breadth of the curriculum it offers helps cater for the needs of anyone in the Bailiwick.