Derry college inundated with record applications

Ciara McGurk who is studying on a Level 3 Extended Diploma at North West Regional College
Ciara McGurk who is studying on a Level 3 Extended Diploma at North West Regional College

The North West Regional College has received a huge increase in the number of applications for full-time study at its three main campuses in Derry, Limavady and Strabane for the new academic year.

In comparison to the end of August last year, the college has received over 500 more applications for its level one, level two and level three further education programmes and its portfolio of higher education courses.

Many of the higher education courses are now over-subscribed.

A College spokesman said they were having to take additional measures to deal with the increase in numbers.

“Only a small number of the College’s full-time programmes have limited places remaining for programmes that provide a practical alternative to A Level study, or for those designed to help students improve their qualifications, gain a trade, or vocational skills.

“We have experienced a trend of increased applications in recent years, and this year has demonstrated that even further.

“With our modern resources and the excellent results achieved by students, more and more young people are choosing to further their qualifications with us.”

At the College’s Strand Road Campus, which recently unveiled the new £18m extension, applications will still be considered for some of the level two diplomas which are designed for those who recently received GCSE results and wish to improve on their grades, focusing on a practical subject, such as playwork (early years).

After just one year successful students will hold a qualification equal to four GCSEs, and the opportunity to progress to further study.

For those who have missed out on securing a higher education course elsewhere, the College will accept applications for the HND in civil engineering, or the part-time options, HNC in music technology, or the HNC advanced practice in work with children and families.

For those ready to gain the vocational skills required for employment in hairdressing, beauty therapy, business and administration or one of the training for success/apprenticeships NI trade areas, applications received this week at the Limavady or Strabane campus may also be considered.

“These courses are ideal for students who wish to seek employment and gain a qualification at the same time,” the College spokesman said.

“With fees starting at just £400 per year this can be the most affordable option for many aiming to improve their CVs and gain a higher education qualification.”

Anyone still considering a course is advised to contact the College as soon as possible to enquire which programmes may still have availability, on 028 7127 6000.