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Bridgnorth students celebrate success ahead of futures in China and at Oxford University

By Rory Smith | Bridgnorth | Education | Published:

Two Bridgnorth students studying at Shrewsbury Colleges Group are celebrating their recent success with futures in China and at Oxford University on the cards.

Shrewsbury Colleges Group

Chloe Millington is currently in year three of a four-year engineering apprenticeship with electronics company Ricoh and is preparing to represent Great Britain at the International WorldSkills Finals, an engineering competition in Shanghai.

And 17-year-old Daniel Bowen is celebrating after receiving an offer to study at the prestigious Oxford University.

As well as excelling in her apprenticeship, Chloe began her journey as part of the college’s Gold WorldSkills engineering team and is only one of two females to make it into the UK squad.

The 20-year-old was originally studying A Levels, but her experience with using machinery in design inspired her to take a more hands-on approach and she swapped onto an apprenticeship at Shrewsbury Colleges Group (SCG) after impressing bosses at Ricoh.

Chloe Millington

In November, Chloe was on one of two winning teams of engineering apprentices to have been crowned the best in the UK after designing and building a remote-controlled crane from scratch.

The teams were two of only six selected from regional heats across Great Britain to make it to the WorldSkills UK finals at the NEC in Birmingham.

The national finals took place at the end of November and Chloe and her teammates won gold in the Manufacturing Team Challenge.

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Her group have now made it into the Great Britain team to represent their country in the International WorldSkills Finals in Shanghai in 2021.

Chloe said: “I was shocked that we won gold. We didn’t think we had done as well as we did. I chose to do an apprenticeship because I wanted to earn as I learn and not get into debt. I’m looking at going into the tool room doing machining jobs at Ricoh.

“Shrewsbury College has been really supportive and given us the chance to take part in night-time learning in our spare time to help us improve our opportunities.

“I’m really looking forward to going to Shanghai in 2021, it’s somewhere I never thought I’d be going.

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Delighted

“I chose product design at A-level and doing that meant I got a chance to go on a few machines and I loved it, so I started looking into apprenticeships and I think it’s a good route for me to go down.”

Claire Shepherd, learning and development officer at Ricoh, said: “We are delighted that our team won gold. It’s an extremely tough competition but the team pulled out all the stops to win the title.

"In the run up to the competition final they put so much effort and commitment into their projects.

"The win was very well deserved, and a testament to the dedication of our apprentices.

“Chloe is excelling in her apprenticeship and we are delighted that she wants to stay on with us and move up the ladder while gaining new skills. We are sure she has a great future in engineering ahead of her.”

Daniel Bowen, from Oldbury Wells School, is studying biology, chemistry and geology A-levels at SCG and is one of six students to have been offered a place at either Oxford or Cambridge Universities.

Daniel said he set himself the challenge to see if he could get an offer at Oxford and has succeeded.

Daniel Bowen

He added: “I learnt more about Oxford when I came to college and started attending MedSoc, which supports students making high level medical and related applications to universities.

"It gave me the inspiration to push for it.

“Only starting at this College made me think I could go. The agency team and teachers have been a great support.

"I gave my personal statement to all my teachers so they could check over it and give me advice.

“I sent an open application to study biology and had an offer come back to study at St Hilda’s College.

"I know my career will be in biological sciences but I am undecided which branch I will go into at this stage.

“Oxford has invited me for an applicant open day in February and I will experience a taster of my course.”

Rory Smith

By Rory Smith
Reporter - @rorysmith_star

Senior reporter based at the Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley, Telford.

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