Somerset’s Top Performing College Honours Outstanding Learners at Shining Stars Awards Ceremony

Yeovil College celebrated another successful year at their 2022 Annual Shining Stars Awards Ceremony, honouring students that have demonstrated outstanding effort and achievement.

After a two-year absence due to COVID where the awards ceremony was transferred to an online platform, Shining Stars returned to a physical format at Westlands Entertainment Venue. The Ceremony, which took place on Friday 17th June at Westlands Entertainment Centre, honoured students from across the whole breath of Yeovil College, including A Levels, Apprenticeships, Vocational qualifications, T Levels and Access to Higher Education.


Several local employers were also recognised for their outstanding contribution to local training, education and supportive work placements; Yeovil District Hospital, Abri, Harmony Fire and Bristow Reproduction Furniture.


Award winners, along with their family, friends and Yeovil College teaching team, were invited to the event, which featured over fifty awards. Joining the ceremony, were several local business people and industry leaders from our community, including Cllr Evie Potts-Jones, Mayor of Yeovil; David Woan, Mark Porter CEO of Jones Building Group and local councillors.


Iconic Fashion designer and former Yeovil College student, Alice Temperley, MBE, led the ceremony with a truly inspiring speech about her journey from Yeovil College to London Fashion house, talking about her journey and determination to follow her dreams, rather than pursue a the career that others tjough she ought to. Alice founded her eponymous label Temperley London in 2000, a year after graduating from the Royal College of Art. Alice is a member of the British Fashion Council Advisory Board and enjoys speaking at key industry events. She is also involved with several charitable organisations, including recently becoming Ambassador for Women for Women International. Alice was awarded an MBE in 2011 for services to the fashion industry. In 2018, Temperley London was awarded the Butterfly Mark by Positive Luxury for a commitment to responsible practices across innovation, social good, environment, philanthropy, and governance.


Mark Bolton, Principal and CEO of Yeovil College, said: “Throughout this evening we are celebrating the extraordinary achievements of our full-time students from across our entire curriculum. I believe that everyone here tonight has the potential to be extraordinary; to be more than you thought possible; to achieve more than you dared to dream; to achieve higher, bigger and better. The diversity of your achievements makes this celebration rewarding in output and rich in story-telling.”


“As a college community, we believe that success breeds success, and that by shining a light on greatness, we will breed a more positive future for our students, our businesses and our communities. We are ambitious for our learners, and we work exceptionally hard to provide them with the best environments, resources, facilities, technology, teachers and future opportunities.”


“We are extremely proud of the recent investments that we have both earned and won in recent years; totalling around £12 million. The next three to four years will see our campus transformed further still, with an additional £40 million of investment to build the best college within our community. If we want to provide our learners with the opportunity to live extraordinary lives, to build extraordinary careers and to contribute in an extraordinary way in this community, then it is our job to provide the extraordinary foundations.


“Your success will forever be entwined within our own rich history, and we will forever be connected. Finally, your last task is to go forward, live brilliant lives and be even more extraordinary!


David Woan, Governor at Yeovil College, former Yeovil College student and Liberal Democrat Councillor, closed the ceremony. David said: Learning is for life.  This is step one on your journey; grab every opportunity that presents itself.  Be curious.  Listen, learn, and fly – live your dream.  I may be several steps down the line from where you are today, but you have a massive head start over me.


I came into Yeovil College many supermoons ago, with very little in the way of a formal education or qualification. I came out of school armed only with a GCSE in maths, but an apprenticeship with Leonardo underpinned by what I learned as a student at Yeovil College, set me on a very winding road to where I am now.


I had only one aim; I just wanted to do my best at whatever I chose.  But life seemed chaotic, it felt like I was making it up as I went along, and how right I was.  Nothing is a given in life, you have to go out and get it.  But it is only when you stop and look back how far you’ve climbed up the hill, you’ll realise that it was all achieved because of you and what you learned here at Yeovil College.  You will feel the challenges life will throw at you; there will be pushbacks and crisis, but if you can keep your nerve and your aim, most of the opportunities which present themselves seem to turn out OK.”


To view the photos from the evening, please click here.


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