Coordinator: Norton Radstock College, UK
Contact Details: South Hill Park, Radstock, BA3 3RW, UK
Starting / Ending Date: October 2008 – September 2010
Summary: The LIFE project aims to develop a train the trainer programme to provide vocational teachers with the necessary skills to integrate key competences in life skills into their vocational areas.This builds on the EUCIS recommendation to the Commission that specific training for vocational teachers should be developed.
Comments: Needs analysis research has been conducted and standards are being developed to help integrate end products into national teacher training programmes.
It’s all about innovation! Business people from the Norton-RadstockÂ area celebrate the completion of an EU-supported pilot project onÂ innovation held at Norton Radstock College. From left, back row, MikeÂ Garner, Andy Jeffery, Tina Pascal; front row, Philippa Kindon, AmyÂ Saull and Richard Maggs.
NORTON RADSTOCK COLLEGE
Small firms set up firstÂ innovation support group
Business people who took part in a European Union-supported pilotÂ project at Norton Radstock College are setting up the area’s firstÂ support group for small firms interested in innovation.
The participants are all self-employed and will be meeting initially atÂ the Positive Living Centre in Midsomer Norton.
Tina Pascal, a partner in the Positive Living Company, which runs theÂ centre, said: “We’re carrying on from where the College pilot projectÂ left off. We’ll be meeting every month or every six weeks.
“In a small business you’re very much on your own, and you don’t findÂ the time to go to training courses like this. The whole point about itÂ was to show business people how to foster and encourage innovation.
“Personally, I found it very motivating, and so did the others. ItÂ opened us up to see other issues and opportunities, and emphasised theÂ need for people in business to step back from what they’re doing everyÂ day and get a wider view of what theyâre trying to achieve.”
Her business was developing a customer loyalty card when the pilotÂ project course began.
She said: “The course helped me to fine-tune the idea, which is aimedÂ at rewarding regular clients by enabling them to benefit from cheaperÂ treatments.”
Norton Radstock College business lecturer Marny Thompson said:Â “Innovation is a key business process and can add value, or enable youÂ to reduce the costs of your current service or production, allowing youÂ to stay ahead of the competition.
“In difficult economic times, innovation could even make the differenceÂ between survival and failure.”
The Managing Innovation pilot project is being funded under the EU’sÂ Leonardo da Vinci programme. Lectures and five workshops were offeredÂ free of charge to local business people and were held at the College’sÂ main campus in Radstock as part of a Europe-wide initiative aimed atÂ fostering an “innovation culture” among small firms.
EU statistics indicate that small to medium-sized businesses make up 99Â per cent of European companies and provide approximately two-thirds ofÂ employment. The survival and growth of these businesses is regarded asÂ essential to Europe’s economic recovery and future prosperity.
The partnership running the innovation project is made up of nineÂ partners from Belgium, Cyprus, Greece, Spain, Italy, Lithuania and theÂ UK.
Founding Agency: Ecotec, UK
Media Circulation List ———————————————–
Press Release: College course leads to setting up of innovation
Date: March 23, 2009
From: Earl Moorhouse
Further Education Today
FE First Magazine
Guardian education section, London
Regional & Local publications:
Somerset Guardian/Somerset Standard
The Journal, Radstock
Evening Post, Bristol
Western Daily Press
Chew Valley Gazette
Fosse Way Magazine
Radio & TV:
BBC Points West
GWR FM Radio
Somer Valley FM
BBC West Online website
South West Business website
+ copies to:
– College staff
– Tina Pascal, of The Positive Living Centre, Midsomer Norton.
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