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Virtual Summer Open Day

Find all of the information below from our Virtual Summer Open Day

Welcome to Lakes College!

Watch the videos below for a message from our Principal and Assistant Principal, Chris Nattress and Daniel Braithwaite!


If you’re considering joining us in September 2021 and would like to find out more about what we can offer, you’re in the right place – with hundreds of courses in a variety of exciting subject areas, we truly believe that there is something for everyone here.

As we are unable to offer tours of our impressive college campus at the moment due to Covid restriction, if you do want to take a look around our buildings and facilities, check out the Virtual Tour!

We can be contacted via email – feel free to send us any questions or feedback you may have:


Subject Areas

Below, you will find a list of the subject areas and courses that we offer at Lakes College.

(Click on a subject area to ‘expand’ it and watch videos and find information from our experienced teaching staff!)

Did You Know?
  • We work with hundreds of employers across West Cumbria!
  • We offer immediate start apprenticeships year-round – all you need is a CV to apply!
  • Apprenticeships are a great option for those who want to start on the job straight away.
  • We offer a huge range of apprenticeships in areas including engineering, science, business, health and social care, childcare, hair and beauty, construction, catering and more…
  • You’ll spend the majority of your time with your employer and only come into college one day a week (if at all – some of our programmes are entirely workplace based where our assessors will come and visit you at your employer’s address.)

Click here to view Frequently Asked Questions about studying an apprenticeship!

We currently have apprenticeship vacancies available – view open positions here!

Whether you’re looking to work your way up the corporate ladder, become an entrepreneur at the head of your own enterprise, or you’re looking for a career in HR, finance, marketing or IT, it all starts right here.

At Lakes College we offer a number of exciting Business courses including:

  • Accounting (AAT)
  • Business (administration/management/support)
  • Customer Service
  • Digital Technolgies (IT)
  • Human Resources (CIPD)
  • Information, Advice and Guidance
  • Lean Organisation
  • Project Management (APM)

We expect West Cumbria to see growth across the sector, with many new businesses and increased opportunity for a variety of roles. For the entry-level office administration jobs, salaries start at around £13,000. But with a range of specialisms to branch out into, your evolution knows no limit.

If you’d like to find out more, send an email to with any course-related questions and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Click here to apply for a business course

From computer games to graphic design, photography to fashion, right through to art therapy and advertising, Art can be a breathtaking and awe-inspiring career.

Creativity is a commodity in many industries – where inspiration and artistic expression meet commerce in a dynamic sector that offers a wealth of exciting career prospects.

Our courses give you the opportunity to explore your abilities and create in collaboration with working agencies from around the region. We offer a diverse variety of subjects in a wide range of professional disciplines, from computer games development and graphic design to fine art and fashion.

Our facilities – including an art studio and dark room – provide the perfect place to gain the skills needed for a future career in the subjects.

At Lakes College you can study courses in a number of areas including:

  • Art and Design
  • Fine Art
  • Graphic Design
  • Games Design
  • Photography

Click here to apply for a course

Childcare and Early Years

This department is really proactive when it comes to making the learning experience as real as possible – from a nursery-style class room, to trips to London. You have the opportunity to help shape a young person’s future, nurturing their talents and helping them to achieve new experiences and uncover skills they didn’t know they had.

We offer full-time study programmes as well as apprenticeships at the college.

Education and Teaching

The teaching department is an outstanding department that gives both graduates and subject specialists the pathway in to teaching. Our Certificate in Education gives those with professional experience the qualification to teach. So if you are a qualified plumber, hairdresser or welder then this is the stepping stone to a teaching career. The post graduate certificate is a teaching qualification for those have already studied a degree and are looking for a job in a secondary school or college.

Courses which Lakes College offers in childcare, early years, education and teaching include:

  • Early Years Educator
  • Forest School Principles
  • Specialist Support for Teaching and Learning in Schools
  • Early Years Practitioner
  • Teaching Assistant
  • Certificate in Education
  • Post Graduate Certificate of Education
  • Working with Children and Families

To find out more about each course and to apply, click here

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to build your own bridge, sports stadium, or skyscraper?

The construction industry is currently enjoying resurgence across the UK, with the two biggest areas for growth being house building and the nuclear industry.

Whatever trade you choose to study – from plumbing, to brickwork, to electrical, to joinery, to civil engineering – you’ll learn all the essential skills you need to build your own career path.

Lakes College offers courses and apprenticeships in many areas, including:

  • Bench joinery
  • Brickwork
  • Construction and the Built Environment
  • Electrical Installations
  • Joinery
  • Painting and Decorating
  • Plumbing

From September, we are also starting a new T Level in Construction (equivalent to 3 A Levels).

If any of these courses sound like they could help you in reaching your dream career, find out more and apply here

Technology is everywhere.

Whether you want to build a network for a local company, design an award winning website or create the next Fortnite, your journey should start with this department.

Our entry level courses offer quite a broad introduction to careers in computing, but at level 3 you can choose to specialise, depending on your chosen career.

In September we launch our brand new Digital T Level – equivalent to 3 A Levels!

At Lakes College we offer courses in a number of areas, including:

  • Computing
  • Digital Technologies (IT)
  • IT User Skills

To find out more about our courses and apply, click here

There is a national shortage of engineers, so now is a great time to break into the industry.

We’ve got plenty of options – you can pursue either a practical, workshop-based career, or if you’re a problem solver we can teach you to design and build solutions on a computer.

We have recently invested over £1 million to provide our students with access to the best facilities and equipment, meaning they are skill-ready when they leave us and join the engineering workforce.

For several years our welding students have excelled at the national WorldSkills competition. Read about their latest achievements here!

Find out more about our engineering courses, and apply here

Motor Vehicle

Entry-level salaries in the sector are around £15,000 – with several hundred employed in and around West Cumbria, not only in local garages, but in the kind of organisations that run their own fleets of vehicles, like local government or distribution businesses.

Experienced Mechanics can look to supervisory roles or move into training apprentices and junior mechanics, or can even start their own businesses in vehicle recovery or repair.

Find out more about our motor vehicle courses here


This is where creativity meets customer care.

Our courses in hair and beauty can open doors to working for global beauty brands, launching your own salon business, working on film sets or in the theatre. The opportunities in this field are only as limited as your imagination!

Most of our hair and beauty students will start off learning in the classroom, but there is plenty of real world learning in our Distinctions salon.

Students are able to bring in their own clients or work on members of the public, to develop customer service skills, technical skills and, most importantly, confidence.

This is a creative department, and we encourage all our students to take part in plenty of competitions throughout the year where they can impress local salon owners with their skills.

Find out more about the courses we offer and apply here

Courses and apprenticeships include:

  • Beauty Therapy

    • Ladies and Gents Hairdressing
    • Hair Services

This department has grown over the last few years to one of the largest departments in the college.

Assisted by the excellent reputation with both students and employers, it has become the provider of choice when it comes to pursuing a career in nursing, care or social care.

The course not only gives you the academic ability that employers and universities expect, it provides you with work experience related to the field you are interested in, essential to pursue a career or to study a degree in these fields.

From hospitals to care homes and social services, there’s a number of courses available at Lakes College to help you achieve your dream career.

  • Health and Social Care
  • Adult Care
  • Cleaning and Support Services
  • Leadership and Management for Residential Childcare
  • Nurse Cadets (T Level Health)

Find out more and apply here

Whether you dream of running your own hotel, or delighting customers with your creations in the kithcen as a chef, we have the right course for you.

With ever-increasing visitors to the Lake District each year, there’s a growing range of career opportunities throughout the region; from working in the great outdoors to working in the kitchen, the career paths in these subjects are diverse, making room for all sorts of ambitions and passions.

Students get the chance to work in our on-site Graduates Restaurant, where they will use fresh ingredients and have first-hand industry knowledge provided by tutors, who have worked in some of the best restaurants in the country.

Courses and apprenticeships we offer include:

  • Chef de Partie
  • Hospitality supervisor
  • Hospitality management
  • Professional cookery
  • Food preparation and cooking
  • Senior Chef Production Cooking
  • Commis chef

Find out more about our catering and hospitality courses here

The Northern Hub of the National College for Nuclear located at Lakes College in West Cumbria officially opened in February 2018.

The facilty holds up to three hundred students and has a state of the art project centre which includes resources such as robotics, advanced control systems, thermo and fluid dynamics rigs and electrical power generation/transmission.

Courses include:

  • Nuclear Decommissioning and Waste Management
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Applied Science
  • Civil Engineering
  • Electrical Power Sysyems and Infrastructure
  • Foundation Diploma in Engineering
  • Applied Chemistry

Find out more about our nuclear courses and apply here


Watch a video below by Stuart Williams explaining more about the course

If you’re interested in making a future out of fitness, why not consider studying sport and channel your passion for exercise into your career?

Careers in sport are almost endless – from sports instructor, football coach, or personal trainer, to fitness club supervisor, leisure and recreation manager, or even teaching – the world of sport offers a rich variety of rewarding career oportunities.

Our department tutors are still very much active in the industry, from sports coaching to physiotherapy and bring a lot of that to the classroom.

Find out more and apply for a course here

Public Services


Public service jobs offer another option for working in local communities in West Cumbria – whether upholding the law as a police officer, attending emergencies in the Ambulance Service or even protecting the nation as a member of the armed service.

Students describe this course as so much more than the emergency services, with learning experiences like planning for a major incident, crime psychology and fitness training. This, coupled with our experienced tutors, give you a real insight in to your chosen career.

Our courses include:

  • Policing
  • Public Services
  • Sport & Physical Activity
  • Uniformed Services

Find out more and apply for a course here

If you don’t already have a pass in your maths or English GCSEs and enrol on one of our courses, you’ll study to top up these key skills alongside your course.

As these subjects could potentially be a limiting factor in your future success and employment opportunities, the college endeavours to make these subjects as engaging, accessible and relevant to your area of study as possible, no matter what your ability.

If you have achieved a GCSE C grade/grade 4 or higher at school, you will continue to develop English and mathematics skills through your vocational programme, or possibly be involved in our core mathematics course.

If you have a GCSE grade D/grade 3 in mathematics, English or both then you will study and resit these subjects to progress to a GCSE grade C/grade 4 level.

If you have a GCSE grade E/grade 2 or below, you will study Functional Skills in either or both mathematics and English.

Maths and English GCSE at a C grade/grade 4 or equivalent is often a requirement for employment, apprenticeships and entry to University level education.

A brand new T-Level qualification will be available at Lakes College from September 2021.

T-Levels are a two-year qualification, which give young people a head start toward the future they want.

They bring classroom learning, an extended industry placement and practical learning together on a course designed with businesses and employers. Students will spend 80 per cent of the time in high standard technical classrooms and workshops at Lakes College. The remaining 20 per cent will be spent on an industrial placement with an employer to assist with the development of knowledge and skills which companies look for.

A T-Level programme is equivalent to three A-levels and attracts UCAS points meaning learners can go onto university after completing the course.

We will be offering T Levels in four routes:

  • Digital
  • Construction

  • Education and Childcare

  • Health and science

Find out more and apply for a course here


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