We are still accepting applications for September 2020 starts.

Our campuses remain closed for the foreseeable future 

Easter Closure and return to study

The College will be closed from Saturday 4th April to Tuesday 14th April (inclusive), there will be no work set for classroom based courses over this normal 2 week holiday period, however we will be returning to remote working on Wednesday 15th April for staff to continue to prepare online learning and resources.

UCC students and Apprentices will return to their online remote learning on Monday 20th April.

Further Education students will return to online remote learning on Wednesday 22nd April. This delay is to allow teaching staff to prepare materials for the next few weeks of online learning on Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st April.

Good News Stories – July to December 2019

Students help two-stepping Terry to Waltz back in time

Two-stepping Terry Brockman waltzed back in time to the days when he danced.  The former ballroom dancer, aged 81, had 24 Colchester Institute students to choose as partners when they visited his care home to make his wish come true.

Margaret Brodie, Foxburrow Grange’s Activities Co-ordinator, said: “When Terry was younger, he was a ballroom dancer.  While chatting with his wife they discussed how much they love dancing and that’s how the wish started.  “I tried so hard to find dancers who would come in and then made contact with Colchester Institute which agreed to do it.”

The first and second year Dance students were joined by Terry’s wife Pat, who visits the Colchester care home daily.  Margaret added: “All I can say is wow.  The young people’s performance was fantastic”.

Students lobby MP

In July, Will Quince, Colchester’s MP, heard from college students about the importance of BTEC qualifications.  A round table discussion took place at Colchester Institute.

Students and staff were able to highlight the importance of Applied General qualifications such as BTEC, CACHE and UAL.  Mr Quince stressed his commitment to doing all he can to ensure the Post-16 curriculum provided choice to school leavers.  Students with Applied General qualifications can either go on to university or take up employment.

College Principal and Chief Executive Alison Andreas thanked Mr Quince for his ongoing support.  She said: “All the students had great stories to tell of the practical and applied nature of their courses, giving them skills their future employers really value.”

Harrison is a Special Constable

Harrison Green achieved a BTEC Subsidiary Diploma in Public Services at The College at Braintree Campus last year and is returning this year to gain his Diploma.  During the summer, Harrison successfully completed his police training and is now a Special Constable with Essex Police.

New Adventures

Dance Course Leader, Hazel Banham, had the pleasure of watching ex-student, Freya Brown, perform with Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures as part of the cast of Romeo and Juliet.  Freya was on the Level 3 Dance Course and graduated with D*D*D* in 2017.

Within the show Freya was a young cast member, a place that she successfully auditioned for out of more than 800 applicants.  She has spent the past year working with the artistic directors along with 5 other young cast members in preparation for their debut last week in Norwich.

Freya performed with professionalism and integrity alongside her peers some of which are 10 years her senior.  She finished the run on the 8th September and now returns to London to complete the final year of her degree at Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance.

Hazel said “A fantastic achievement from someone still in training and no doubt with a promising career ahead of her.”

Fashion and Textiles students’ success for Rachel, Ashley and Jenna

Rachel Thackeray was awarded the Sainsbury’s Home Award at the New Designers Graduate show in July.  Sainsbury’s have purchased many of the textile designs produced in her final year and Rachel is now working freelance for them. 

Further details: www.newdesigners.com/awards

Ashley Raynor has just returned from showing at New York Fashion Week where she presented her graduate collection on the catwalk on 6th September.  She was selected by Flyingsolo (the largest independent Designer platform in the US) at the New Designers graduate exhibition in July.  Ashley has now launched her independent fashion label and has her first stockists.  She has been featured in the following magazines; K-Fashion, BAHM and AIME. 

Further details: www.DesignsbyAshley.co.uk

Jenna Martin was awarded the title of Student Designer of the Year, at the National Bridal Buyer Awards which took place on 9th September in Harrogate.  The prestigious Award was judged by designers from the Bridal Industry. 

Further details: https://bridalbuyer.com/

Will Quince MP visits Public Services learners

The first year level three Public Services learners were recently visited by Colchester’s MP, Will Quince. During his visit Will explained his role as an MP and as a minister and spent a significant amount of time answering questions from the learners on a wide range of topics including Brexit, Universal Credit and funding for Further Education. His visit gave them a really useful insight into the work of parliament and the government and a deeper understanding of some of the issues facing the country at this time. Will’s visit has had a positive impact on their understanding of politics and the impact is has on everyone’s lives.


UCC School of Art students and Colchester’s Roman Wall

Level 5 (Second Year) BA (Hons) Photography are working on a Photogrammetry project with the Borough Council.  This term they will be taking part in a series of talks, walks and workshops about Colchester’s Roman Wall with Dr Jess Tipper, the Archaeological Advisor to the Borough Council, Professor Dominic Powlesland, an expert on photogrammetry, and Philip Crummy, the Director of the Colchester Archaeological Trust.

The students’ recordings of the wall will be used in Professor Powlesland’s 3D renderings of the site as part of the Borough Council’s survey.  In addition, the students will make work inspired by the wall, the way it sits within the environment, and the townsfolk response to it, all as part of their Contemporary Photographic Contexts Module.

Grohe visit Colchester Institute

Grohe came to Colchester Institute, Sheepen Road campus for 2 days in October.  Grohe is a leading global brand for complete bathroom solutions and kitchen fittings and a global brand, dedicated to providing innovative water products.

Learners were given lessons and demonstrations on the Grohe products.  Grohe have kindly donated products to the Plumbing Department, which can be installed or used as learning aids in the classroom.

The opening of the new Grohe facility is scheduled for Wednesday, 6th November 2019





UCC Film students complete 166 hours of Work Experience on Film Sets

In early October a high demand for student help on various film productions allowed us to place 8 Colchester Institute students on Work Experience placements on a variety of film sets.  This also involved several first-year students who only started their course last month.

The work experienced included:

  • 2 days as Location Assistants for completion of a feature film for potential Netflix distribution, with Rebellion Films
  • 3 days on a short film set for Independent Films
  • 1 day support for a music video shoot for Offset Films
  • 1 day support for a corporate film with producer at Nemorin Films

Rebellion shoot – Project: Schools out Forever (release 2020)

Our students worked alongside veteran Location Manager Saul Crockett (The Inbetweeners Movie) to help complete 2 days of pickup shots filmed at Orwell Park School.  The crew consisted of around 40 crew members and a few actors.  Two students even got roped into working as extras for a few scenes!  Each day was an industry standard 12-hour day, but our students worked hard throughout, earning praise from Saul and the production crew.

Independent Film – Project: Jack (released as a short to pitch for a multi-million pound movie)

Our students attended all 3 days of this shoot, located at the standing trench set outside of Ipswich, where famous war movies such as Journey’s End and Private Peaceful were shot.  Our students offered assistance in the art, locations and electrical department.  The work was physical throughout and the days were again scheduled as 12-hour days. Students worked closely with many main crew members and forged contacts with many experienced professionals who worked on recent Marvel films, the new James Bond and the upcoming Jurassic World 3.  The students also receive personal thanks by the director Gary Freedman and producer Chris McBride for their hard work.

Offset Films – Project: Music Video

Offset Films asked for support to film a behind-the-scenes video of the process of creating a music video for a newcomer artist in their new studio. Using our camera equipment, hours of performances and interviews were captured which will be edited and delivered to Offset Films in November.  Offset Films have now also agreed to join our new mentorship scheme which we will be launching officially next year.

Thomas Winward – Project: Corporate Business Film

Thomas Winward, producer at Nemorin Films in London, formerly from Colchester has enlisted two of our students to support the shoot of a promotional film of a notary business in Colchester.

Student receives University Excellence Scholarship
India Talora De Verre, L3 Extended Diploma Applied Science student, completed with us in 2018/19 achieving a Triple D*.  She recently received a Bangor University Excellence Scholarship of £3,500 at their awards evening.  Congratulations to India.

The Bangor University Excellence Scholarship is awarded to new undergraduate students from the UK and EU who achieve the highest academic attainment upon entry in the relevant subject areas.  Please see attached is a photo of India receiving the scholarship.  India is currently studying Zoology at Bangor University.