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Student Conference 2023 is another huge success!

13th Jun 2023

Abingdon & Witney College’s annual Student Conference hit the road and was this year hosted by global cyber security firm ‘Sophos’.

Located in Sophos’ impressive UK Head Office, a diverse group of our students were welcomed to the event by Jacqui Canton, Principal and CEO of Abingdon & Witney College, before hearing a motivational keynote presentation from Rachel Lacey, Senior Director of IT Applications at Sophos.

The students, who represented a cross section of our 2022-23 cohort, were given a tour of Sophos’ amazing facilities before taking part in two fabulous workshops. The sessions were run by ‘The Abingdon Bridge’, a fantastic local charity who offer wellbeing support for young people.

The first was a thought-provoking workshop, ‘Enabling young people to become more digitally resilient’, focusing on the impact that prolonged social media usage has on mental health & wellbeing. Students were able to share their experiences and the impact that it has on their own lives.

The second workshop ‘The Real Deal’ was led by highly experienced drug and alcohol workers from ‘The Abingdon Bridge’. The focus was to explore why young people use drugs and alcohol and how they can learn to become more resilient and not give in to peer pressure. Again, students were given the opportunity to share their own experiences in a safe and supportive space.

Our hosts then took over and delivered four incredible master classes on the ‘Career Journey – How to be work ready’. This stimulating session offered our cohort invaluable advice that will no doubt help them when they come to starting their own career journeys.

“It was definitely a life-experience that people should take part in when wanting to learn more about entering the work environment. The hosts were amazing, they showed us how passionate they were.” Besnik – Level 3 Business Student

Hearing from our students is important to us, and that’s exactly what we did for the second half of this packed conference. We ran feedback sessions to hear from students about what they really thought of Abingdon & Witney College. We shared our college strategy with them, asked for their feedback on teaching, explored how we communicate with our students and also looked at what else we could do to improve the student experience.

“The experience of visiting Sophos was impressive… The content of the day was intriguing, and I learnt a lot of valuable things and had the chance to feedback important things about the college” Claire – T Level Education and Childcare Student

Jacqui Canton said

“This was a wonderful experience and I hope that our students got just as much out of the conference as I did. I’d like to thank Sophos and The Abingdon Bridge for sharing their knowledge and expertise as I’m sure that we will all remember this event for a long time”.

If you would like to know more about Abingdon & Witney College and what we do to support young people in Oxfordshire, then please explore some of the links below.