Shrewsbury Sixth Form celebrates March 2011 Award Winners and Nominees

PUBLISHED: 12:23 24 March 2011 | UPDATED: 21:30 20 February 2013

The evening was held on a fiercely cold night, on the tail end of winter, but this was countered almost immediately upon entry by the warm and friendly manner of the front-of-house staff, consisting largely of student volunteers who were soon joined

When we think of education in Shrewsbury, the picture that may immediately leap into our minds is the imposing frontage of Shrewsbury School, perched upon the hillside on one bank of the Severn. The casual passer-by might be forgiven for assuming that it is the towns focal point for learning and academic achievement. But they would not be entirely correct. On the opposite side of the river, nestled tightly between buildings in the towns West End is Shrewsbury Sixth Form College. Whilst not as strikingly situated as the boys school it does boast an extraordinary asset - the vast amount of creative flair and applied skill that its student body has to offer, and their extensive rage of unique talents. Something not always immediately apparent if observing the horde of youths that flood out onto Shrewsburys streets but it was far more visible at the colleges annual Celebrating Achievement Evening, at the Theatre Severn in early March.

The evening was held on a fiercely cold night, on the tail end of winter, but this was countered almost immediately upon entry by the warm and friendly manner of the front-of-house staff, consisting largely of student volunteers who were soon joined by the Mayor Cllr Mrs Kath Owen, Peter Bettis, Chair of Shrewsbury Business Chamber, and other luminaries.

College Principal, Martin Ward, took the podium to welcome families and special guests alike, thanking them for their support - after which he handed over to the students. Initially in the energetic form of Andrew Horton, student master of ceremonies, who continued to direct events with tireless fervour throughout the night. He quickly introduced Indie-rock group Endorphins, who stunned with an energetic and professional performance of several songs of their own composition. From then, it was not long before more and more young faces started to take the microphone.

Presentations from all different departments and extracurricular groups were equally impressive. To name a few, four girls provided a heart-warming presentation and video diary about the successful completion of their Gold Duke of Edinburgh Expedition - managing to survive the elements with their sense of humour intact - and the inspiring story of 2012 Paralympic swimming hopeful Gemma Almond was shown via podcast, detailing her achievements in international swimming. Features of this sort continued later into the evening: the Student Council Environment Group gave a witty and confident delivery of an important message about climate change; and history student Lewis Willcocks took the opportunity to remind the audience of the heroism of local soldier-poet, Wilfred Owen. Interspersing these sections were yet more examples of the colleges musical talent: in the first half alone, a touching guitar/vocal duet and solo piano recital were complemented by a healthy dose of Vivaldi from the musically adept college string ensemble.

But it was not only the interpersonal skills of college students that came to light, nor their determined approach to their pursuits. Business students, those studying Leisure and Tourism, and the members of the Young Enterprise group demonstrated high entrepreneurial acumen when recounting the details of day events that they had orchestrated around town, and small business ventures that they had set up and were continuing to manage as part of their studies. The Lady Mayor praised them as a credit to their college and to Shrewsbury itself. Their personally produced items were on sale in the foyer during the interval, where yet more students were having a collection to fund their biological expedition to Madagascar, and an intuitive exhibition of creative artwork was being displayed in the theatres Haydn Smith gallery.

Almost lost amongst all of this was the process of actually presenting achievement awards to those students to have accomplished the most in their respective areas of study. As the presenter of the Earth Sciences award aptly expressed the proceedings, a veritable storm of superlatives were extended to thoroughly sing the praises of each award recipient or nominee. Each tutor or department head to present an award during the evening spoke with enthusiasm and visible pride about the students whose names came up.

The evening was a shining showcase of talent and achievement and demonstrated the achievement of college students in its own, more subtle way, students had arranged the nights line-up almost entirely; students manned the theatre doors, and the trophies for achievement awards were manufactured by the colleges product design students. The overriding sense was that the staff, the Principal, and even the Mayor were only present to perform their formal functions. The students were the ones pulling all of the strings.

Celebrating Achievement March 2011 Award Winners and Nominees

Business Chamber Award - Awarded to: Anthony Price

Outstanding Contribution to Sport & PE Award - Female - Awarded to: Ceri Davies
Other Nominees: Grace Chadwick, Jean Hughes, Kadie Pinches, Jess Webb

Outstanding Contribution to Sport & PE Award - Male - Awarded to: Tom Swallow. Other Nominees: Adam Dwyer, Michael Gerrard, Michael Mahony, James Nicoll

Applied Award -Awarded to: Emily Seager (Leisure, Travel & Tourism). Other Nominees: Abi Groome (Health& Social Care), Milly Jerman (Applied Business Studies)

Business School Award -Awarded to: Matthew Dodd (Economics). Other Nominees: Andrew Cooling (Accounting), David Jones (Business Studies)

Community Award - Awarded to: Rebecca Fielding. Other Nominees: Tom Lee, Alex OFee-Worth, Bridie Sedgebeer, Sarah Thomas

Business Chamber Award -Awarded to: Lauren Corfield. Other Nominee: Barbara Sowilarska

Art & Design Award - Awarded to: Emily Bates (Design Technology -Textiles). Other Nominees: Rachel Green (Design Technology - Product), Sukie Buzzacott (Art), Rhys Williams (Graphics)

English Award - Awarded to: James Leahy (Literature). Other Nominees: Polly Hall (Combined), Georgia Rodgers (GCSE), Ben Williams (Language)

Creative & Media Award - Awarded to: Sarah Veecock (Performance Studies) Other Nominees: Suzie Capps (Music), Alexander Smith (MediaStudies/FilmStudies)

Outstanding Contribution to Music/Performance Award - Awarded to: Tim Farrow. Other Nominees: James Carter, Alana Douglas-Jones, Andrew Horton

Science Award - Awarded to: George Ashton (Biology). Other Nominees: Matthew Dodd (Physics), Tim Farrow (Biology)

Mathematics Award - Awarded to: Elliot Reynolds (Further). Other Nominees: Charlie Harris (Use of), Elliot Jones (GCSE), Helena Raymond (Maths)

Technology Award - Awarded to: Stephen Langford-Jones (Electronics). Other Nominees: RobinTrigg (ICT)

Earth Science Award - Awarded to: Stevie Cashmore (Environmental Studies). Other Nominees: Josh Evans (Environmental Studies), Michael Mahony (Geography), Gregory Phillpotts (Geology)

Humanities Award - Awarded to: Lorenzo Perring-Mattiassi (Classical Civilisation). Other Nominees: Katie Jarman (Law), Naiyan Jones (Philosophy & Religious Studies), Lewis Willcocks (History)

Social Science Award - Awarded to: Jess Milton (Psychology). Other Nominee: Georgina Preston (Sociology)

General Studies Award - Awarded to: Lloyd Burgess. Other Nominees: Alexandra Hobman, Jed Morgan, Rhian Morris

Extended Project Award - Awarded to: Rebecca Jeffrey. Other Nominees: Alexander OFee-Worth, Lottie Rapson

Modern Foreign Languages Award - Awarded to: LottieRapson. Other Nominees: Holly Kirkham, Phoebe Patience

By Tom Lee, president of Student Council, English student and aspiring journalist

* More pictures from the event will be published in the May issue of Shropshire Life

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