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Andrew is a winner at the global BTEC Awards

Andrew Urben, a second year learner at Eastleigh College, received a bronze award for BTEC Business and Enterprise Learner of the Year 2021 at the annual BTEC Awards. His outstanding achievements are among inspiring stories from more than 700 BTEC learners, tutors, teachers, schools and colleges from over 30 countries to be recognised and celebrated in the competition.

Paul Cox, Chief Executive and Principal at Eastleigh College said:
“For a lot of young people, having a BTEC under their belt has been their route into a job, a quality apprenticeship or a degree course at university. Andrew displayed a vast number of IT and media skills in his coursework which were strengths he did not realise he had. Following his nomination for this award by college tutors, Andrew has become a valued member of the Marketing Team and we are pleased he has chosen to begin his career at Eastleigh College.”

Caroline Perrett, Course Manager for Level 3 Media, Marketing & Event Management said:
“I am so proud of Andrew - His innovative ideas, creative flare and dedication to his course has been outstanding; a really well deserved award.”

BTEC course provided the turning point

Andrew, who watched the celebration of BTEC winners with his new team mates on a livestream, said:
“In 2019 at the age of 21 I started the Business and Enterprise course at Eastleigh College with little confidence and self-belief. For me, the turning point was when I was nominated Project Leader of Fairtrade Fortnight, a project organised by the college Event Management students as part of the work experience element of their course. The Fairtrade Event was an idea Andrew created after recognising the need for events to continue during the pandemic.

Dedication and commitment to his studies

With an 100% attendance record, Andrew worked on the 9-unit qualification meeting the distinction criteria each time. When Andrew planned and hosted the online Fairtrade Fortnight event, he created a website and remotely interacted with a large audience over a two-week period. From educational packages for all ages to interactive live sessions (using a variety of learning platforms) evening quizzes to 70 participants and a bake off. To reach a larger audience Andrew worked hard to create a press release which successfully advertised the event in the newspaper and twice on local radio. In addition to studying, Andrew continued in part-time employment throughout the pandemic.

Energetic and independent thinking

Andrew identified the skill set needed from his peers from which he handpicked a team and they planned and led the project exceptionally well. He held weekly meetings consisting of a schedule for the week and a debrief on previous tasks. A plan was in place with deadlines to meet. He created Gantt charts, minutes of meetings and every communication was documented accordingly. He encouraged his peers and always congratulated them on milestones achieved.

Professional work ethic

April Inglis, Enterprise Skills tutor said:
“Andrew demonstrated incredible ambition when he approached me asking if he and his team could create a college wide tutorial session for delivery to over 1000 learners to promote the Fairtrade event. This was an incredible task to set themselves as not only did the research and resources need to be generated, but they also then needed to be made interactive, differentiated, and launched within the Nearpod learning platform for use in hybrid and remote learning.

“From the outset of the project, Andrew was polite, respectful, and hugely independent throughout the process and was the sort of person that you enjoy working with and respect as a professional in any workplace. Andrews work ethic, commitment, and determination to produce resources that were user friendly, educational, engaging and of the highest quality was nothing short of astonishing for someone at the very start of their career pathway.”

[Photo: Andrew Urben (left) receives his award from Jon Sendell, Chair of the Board of Governors watched by Caroline Perrett and Paul Cox.]