Strode College


History: The original Technical Institute opened in 1899. It then re-opened as a college in 1973.

Address: Street, Somerset.

Ambience: A friendly and supportive atmosphere. A high-flying college, it was awarded Beacon status in February 2004.

Who's the boss? Principal James Staniforth

Prospectus: 01458 844 422;

UCAS code: S80

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Keen on widening participation, but evidence of study at Level 3 is usually required for all HE courses.

Foundation degrees: Three: managing in the public services; history, heritage and archaeology; and e-business technologies.

Vital statistics: Around 3,600 students, with roughly 2,000 of these being adult learners. Courses range from GCSEs to foundation degrees. Provides education and training to the people of Street, Glastonbury, Shepton Mallet, Langport, Wells and Castle Cary.

Added value: High student success rates. Wide range of 'enrichment activities' on offer, including various sports, Duke of Edinburgh's Award, a college ensemble, college choir and college theatre. New sports facilities, including a floodlit all-weather pitch, opened in 2008. The Business Development Unit provides a range of services to local employers. The college was recognised as a Centre of Vocational Excellence (CoVE) in business and management skills in 2004. As a member of the University of Plymouth Colleges Partnership, foundation degrees are validated by the university.

Teaching: When Ofsted inspected the college in October 2008, they found the quality of the college's standards to be 'good' across all areas. The capacity of the college to improve was judged as 'outstanding'.

Any accommodation? None offered by the college, but it can advise on homestays.

Cheap to live there? Varies – rents can range between £60 and £95 per week across Somerset.

Transport links: The main transport services into the college are public service bus routes.

Fees: Vary for FE courses, with many students eligible for fee exemption. Full-time HE courses starting in 2013 are £6,500 per year, and part-time fees are £3,250 per year.

Bursaries: The college takes part in the National Scholarship Programme, and offers small hardship funds.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: There is a local nightclub and a variety of lively pubs, bars and restaurants. The Glastonbury Festival is held nearby almost every summer.

Glittering alumni: None as yet.