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Cumbria Chamber partners with Lakes College to host Power 40 event

News item details

  • News date: Nov '23
  • News author: Amie Todhunter

Story Content

Lakes College hosted a skills-focused event as Cumbria Chamber’s fourth and final Power 40 of 2023 gathered business leaders from some of the county’s most influential businesses.

The afternoon started with a tour led by Principal Chris Nattress, which took in the college’s modern facilities including the business suite, Construction Skills Centre and National College for Nuclear.

The focus on training students in new and in demand technologies was evident with facilities for studying air-source heat pumps and using virtual reality (VR) to enhance the learning experience.

After the tour, the group then watched a presentation on Cumbria’s Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP) by Cumbria Chamber MD, Suzanne Caldwell.

Suzanne discussed some of the key skills challenges faced by businesses in the county and gave details on the work underway to tackle them, such as:

  • The Tourism Talent Hub – an online resource paring candidates with roles and training in the hospitality industry
  • Construction Industry Training Board’s (CITB) green skills resources
  • Engagement with schools and colleges aimed at developing employability skills in young people
  • Promoting alternative pathways to recruitment, e.g. employing ex-offenders

The group then headed to the college’s in-house restaurant for a delicious three-course festive meal cooked and served by the hospitality and catering students.

Suzanne Caldwell said:

“Our recent Power 40 event at Lakes College showcased to local business leaders Lakes College’s  cutting-edge facilities and commitment to innovation and embracing new technology in training the next generation. This collaboration between industry and education is vital in nurturing the skills needed for Cumbrian businesses to thrive in the rapidly evolving business environment. Not only that we enjoyed a tremendous Christmas dinner – thanks to the great Lakes College students!”

Chris Nattress said:

“It was a pleasure to host the event with the Chamber, showcasing our fantastic facilities, brilliant students, and top class staff. A key part of our college mission is to work in partnership with employers and industry representatives in our region to develop the highly skilled people and talent pipeline our economy needs now and round the corner. We are a full part of the Local Skills Improvement Plan for Cumbria developed by the Chamber of Commerce and welcomed the opportunity to meet with so many employers at the event. I was naturally very proud of our catering students and staff who put on a cracking Christmas meal.”