Reading College students team up with Compass Recovery College

6 April, 2022

Students from our Academic and Professional Studies faculty at Reading College have partnered with Compass Recovery College to learn about wellbeing and develop employability skills by taking part in project-based learning projects.

Left to right: George Wiseman from Compass Recovery College, Business Level 3 students Bradley Spencer, Parsa Bahader and Shantana Biswas and Ashley Hitchman from Compass Recovery College.

Becoming young marketeers

Our Business Level 3 Extended Diploma students devised marketing campaigns for Compass Recovery College, to enable them to raise awareness of the wellbeing courses available for 18–25-year-olds.

They worked in groups to undertake market research in the college. They worked alongside 18-25-year-olds in the community to find out the best ways to market the courses to them. The students used SWAT and PESTLE analysis and researched advertising. In response, they then created social media marketing campaigns and designed flyers.

Shantana Biswas presents her group’s Instagram posts to Compass Recovery College and the rest of her Business Level 3 class

Justine is studying a Business Level 3 Extended Diploma at Reading College.

She said: “We were asked to design a marketing campaign for Compass Recovery College’s gardening for wellbeing courses.

“We found pictures of gardens and quotes about how gardening helps mental health, anxiety and stress to create Instagram posts.

“This project took me out of my comfort zone and taught me interpersonal skills. It helped me to interact better with people and work in a team.”

This project helped the students to develop skills in teamwork, decision-making, communication, leadership and working to a timeline.

Wellbeing workshops

A representative from Compass Recovery College present their Managing Anxiety workshop to Health and Social Care students.

Students studying early years and health and social care programmes at Reading College took part in wellbeing workshops delivered by Compass Recovery College.

Over six sessions, they learnt about topics including mental health, eating disorders, depression and anxiety, helping them to improve their awareness of wellbeing and develop strategies to manage their wellbeing.

Students were given information about what support is available to support their wellbeing and safeguarding while studying with Activate Learning.

Alexandra is studying a Health and Social Care Level 1 Extended Certificate at Reading College.

She said: “I loved the workshops!

We talked about mental health, eating disorders, depression and anxiety. We learnt how to look after ourselves and how exercise can help with our wellbeing.

“We also learnt how important it is to talk to our family and friends, which has helped me to be more open with them.

“These workshops are preparing me for work in the future. I want to work with children with learning difficulties, and these workshops will help me to know how to take care of them.

“They also taught me how to help someone with depression. They gave me advice, tips and positive words to say to them, which have helped with a friend who is suffering from depression.”

In response, students studying our health and social care programmes will be doing well-being walks as part of their teamwork unit and applying what they have learned from the workshops.

Alexandra is studying a Health and Social Care Level 1 Extended Certificate at Reading College.

What this means for our students

Amanda Graham, Project Based Learning Specialist at Activate Learning, said: “I would like to thank Compass Recovery College for working with our students.

“This project has enabled our students to understand wellbeing. It has encouraged students to work on their own mental health and develop strategies to look after their own wellbeing.

“It has been an effective project that has helped them with the transition from remote learning to coming back onto campus. It has helped them to interact more with others and enjoy their learning.

Lara Stavrinou, Compass Recovery College Manager at Compass Recovery College, said: “We have enjoyed engaging with the students in a range of conversations; from understanding more about anxiety and depression, to increasing self-confidence, to understanding eating disorders and improving sleep.

“We know that the last few years have been especially hard on young people and hope to be able to work more with Activate Learning to support their students in the future.”

Health and Social Care students

Why Project-based learning is important

Project-based learning helps students to gain knowledge, skills and attributes by working for an extended period to investigate and respond to a complex question, problem or challenge.

These projects are designed to help students to think critically and develop problem-solving, teamwork and self-management skills.

Amanda adds: “Project-based learning enables our students to solve a real-world problem, to help local organisations in a range of different vocations.

“Students learn how to develop employability skills such as teamwork, problem solving, decision-making, leadership as well as developing their skills in English, maths and technology.

“They can draw experience from work experience and topics that are closely related to their curriculum which helps to reinforce their learning.”

Find out about Business and Enterprise, Early Years or Health and Social Care courses at Reading College or contact us on 0800 612 6008. Discover Compass Recovery College or contact them on 0118 937 3945.