Cornwall College


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History: The College was established in 1929 to meet the training needs of local industry. It merged with St Austell College and Saltash College in 2001 to create one of the largest colleges in the UK.

Address: Seven main sites plus a range of community venues. The largest campus is at Camborne but there are others in Newquay, St Austell, Rosewarne, Stoke Climsland and Saltash. The college incorporates Falmouth Marine School and Duchy College.

Ambience: Surfer dude. Students have the benefit of Cornwall's beaches to practise their carving, cut backs, duck dives and goofy foots. This is such a crucial part of the local culture that they even offer a surf science foundation degree from the Newquay campus.

Who's the boss? David Linnell is the principal and CEO.

Prospectus: 0845 22 32 567, download one here and follow on Twitter @CornwallCollege.

UCAS code: C78

What you need to know

Easy to get into? 120 UCAS points from A-levels, national diplomas or national certifcates are needed for foundation degrees. Honours degrees ask for an appropriate HND, foundation degree or equivalent.

Foundation Degrees: Over 100, ranging from animation to zoology with everything from boat design to business, event management, fine art practice, IT, marine aquaculture, newspaper and magazine journalism, sport and tourism in between.

Vital statistics: One of the largest further education colleges in England, offering the widest range of courses in Cornwall. Around 45,000 students, with over 2,500 studying at university level. Part of the Combined Universities in Cornwall (CUC) partnership. University courses are generally validated by the University of Plymouth and include renewable energy, equine science, business, IT, creative arts and media, tourism and hospitality, marine, sport and health.

Added value: Localised campuses with specialist areas provide a friendly environment with much more one-to-one support than you are likely to get from a larger university campus. £25 million has been invested in new buildings and computer facilities with many new projects currently being planned.

Teaching: Good in horticulture, animal care and equine, and satisfactory in all other areas inspected by Ofsted.

Any accommodation? None provided by the college except at Stoke Climsland where full-board is available. Some campuses can give you details of local self-catering residences and lodging lists to help you find somewhere to live.

Cheap to live there? Rents range across Cornwall but being so close to the coast can come with a price tag. A room in Newquay could set you back over £100 per week. Rooms from £65 can be found in other locations nearby.

Transport links: The college’s main sites are up to 80 miles apart. All the colleges offer subsidised buses with pickups all over the county. The county has good road, rail and air links to the rest of the UK. Newquay airport has regular flights to and from Stansted and Gatwick. The nearest motorway is the M5, which joins the county's main trunk road at Exeter.

Fees: Tuition fees for full-time students starting in 2013 will be £6,000 a year for most full-time HNCs, foundation degrees, bachelors degrees or top-ups.

Bursaries: Full-time students in receipt of a full maintenance grant may be eligible for a £600 college bursary.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: The students' union organises social events and there are student bars at two of its campus sites. Newquay's pubs and clubs attract clubbers from across the country.

Sporting reputation: Cornwall is arguably home to the best surfing in the country, with many national events every year. The famous Ripcurl Boardmasters competition takes place here. Sporting facilities at each campus with a wide range of activities available.

Glittering alumni: Chris Harris, speedway British Grand Prix winner; Harry Collier, Kubb's front man; Alex Parks, winner of Fame Academy; seafood chef Rick Stein.