Thursday, 8 June 2017

The Importance of Supporting Alumni

I recently got the opportunity to meet with one of our former students who’s on a quest to develop his skills in Kickboxing. Already a five time World Champion, Elliott is now looking to continue improving in the sport and competing at the highest levels.
Helping Elliott with some sponsorship
Elliot got in touch with me to ask for support from the College and as one of our alumni – as well as a Dover District Council apprentice whose training we currently provide – I felt it was important to support him with sponsorship.
Elliott in action!
But money doesn’t grow on trees, and particularly not in the world of FE. So just why do we care about helping our alumni, even when they’re working towards goals which are unrelated to the skills they developed at the College?

East Kent College prides itself on its work within the community. We have it in our mission statement; the words ‘East Kent College is committed to developing the prosperity and wellbeing of the communities it serves’ stand proud on our website, and in our minds.
Presenting James with his sponsorship
And those words aren’t just rhetorical fluff. It is our genuine aspiration to deliver beneficial change through taking an outward facing view of our world. We want to be embedded in our communities, developing links, building partnerships, and in the end, getting positive, tangible results for them.

As part of that drive supporting all of our students is key, as our College is like a family. Whether they’re alumni like Elliott or one of our other recent sponsorship recipients, James, or current students, giving them the support they need to develop more is important. It’s a holistic process, and one which enables those students to go further in their own lives.
James showcasing his skills on the slopes
Although our College doesn’t choose to support these alumni or students in order to get something out of it, often it’s paid back in dividends when those alumni come back to the College and support other students; inspiring them with their own stories and messages.
And you know what – you can never put a price on that kind of inspiration for our students. So, long may we continue to support our students and alumni in their quests, and good luck to each and every one of them for following their dreams.

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