The trip was organised as part of the College's Erasmus+ programme which gives learners work experience in other European countries and hosts learners and staff from Colleges abroad. All the learners receive a Europass Mobility certificate at the end of the trips to enhance their CVs for future job searches.
The trip started with a reception at Osnabrück Town Hall hosted by a vice mayor Mrs Jabs-Kiesler and attended by Derby's ambassador to the town Daniel Hampton and senior management from Osnabrück Technical College. As well as cultural visits and sight seeing, the group spent time at Volkswagon's factory in the town – seeing a robotics project in action and visited a computer fair in Hannover.
Derby College's International Officer Oliver Stonier explained: "More than 150 Derby College learners have been involved in the highly successful Erasmus+ project over the past two years visiting a wide range of countries including Sweden, Estonia, Germany, Finland and Denmark. We are also applying for further funding to organise further work experience programmes later this year for students in a wide range of vocational areas. Derby College has one of the largest European lifelong learning programme in the East Midlands. This gives learners, apprentices and staff the opportunity to work with their European counterparts to widen their work and cultural experience. Participating in European projects gives young people an opportunity to develop their transferable vocational skills by having access to real learning opportunities. It also increases their awareness of learning and employment opportunities in different European countries - raising their aspirations for their future careers."
Derby College Chief Executive Mandie Stravino concluded: "Our role is to provide young people with the skills they need to progress onto the next stages of their lives and to support employers by developing the future workforce with the skills and attitudes that they require in the workplace. We find that learners and apprentices from the companies that we work with locally greatly benefit from the experience both as visitors and hosts as it broadens their horizons and increases their confidence. This experience, as part of their College and apprenticeship programmes, are therefore valuable preparation for the next stage of their lives – whether that is higher education, an apprenticeship or work."