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The Corporation

Posted: 06/11/17

A century of success is celebrated

One hundred years of dedicated service at West Nottinghamshire College was applauded last week among employees.

Long-serving members of staff celebrate with Principal Dame Asha Khemka and Deputy Principal and director of finance, Andrew Martin

The century of service was racked-up by four members of staff who all began working for the college back in 1992.

Principal and chief executive Dame Asha Khemka hosted this year’s long service awards, paying tribute to the foursome’s hard work, experience and achievements, before hosting a celebration meal for them at the college’s Refined fine dining restaurant on Thursday (2 November).

Steve Gathercole, Gavin Peake, Susan Spybey and Harvinder Atwal joined colleagues and family members to share the celebration which saw Dame Asha present them with a long service certificate, and gifts of chocolates and flowers.

Steve, who is the curriculum manager for music and media, joined the college as a lecturer in graphic design after working at Sheffield’s Parkwood College as a graphics lecturer.

He moved into his curriculum team leader role in 2005 and has worked across many of the college’s campuses before being based in the college’s Create department at the Derby Road campus.

Harvinder began her career at West Notts at the Chesterfield Road campus as a receptionist, moving to be clerical assistant for development managers in 1995. In 1999 her long-term career objective was to remain at the college and take up any opportunities as they arise.

She certainly did this as she moved to work with bksb, the college’s business arm, and now the UK’s most popular online GCSE and Functional Skills solution. Harvinder worked as a project manager and then managing director before finally becoming the director of the award-winning company, which provides easy-to-use online assessments and learning resources to over 20 million people.

Learning resources assistant Susan joined the college in the same month as colleague Harvinder, also as a receptionist. She moved to the Derby Road campus in 2001 and is now part of the learning resources team and completed her Library and Information Services qualification in 2009.

Finally, director of IT and learning resources Gavin was applauded for his hard work and progression through the many IT changes that the college has seen. He began his career as a part-time lecturer and laboratory technician and also had a role as a learning advisor.

In 1997 Gavin became a lecturer for computing and IT and then moved to a programme manager role the following year. He was promoted to head of centre, then associate director of learning, and now leads the whole of the college’s IT and learning resources team and is “proud to be moving IT services in the right direction.”

Dame Asha said: “To have members of staff enjoying their careers and seeing such success fills me with immense pride and pleasure. I have enjoyed finding out more about each of our long-serving members’ careers and how they’ve developed as professionals and how they’ve helped to shape and change our students’ lives over three decades.

“I was honoured to be able to thank them and show my appreciation for their commitment, and I’m delighted that they’re both happy and proud in their jobs and I hope they go on to make many more happy memories at the college.”

Also reaching their 25-year milestones of working at West Nottinghamshire College were sites and transport manager Robert Wilton and network engineer Andrew Fletcher, who were unfortunately unavailable to join the celebrations.

Caption: (left to right) Deputy principal and director of finance Andrew Martin joined Harvinder Atwal, Dame Asha Khemka, Gavin Peake, Steve Gathercole and Susan Spybey.