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Welcome to the second issue of our Student Express, your College magazine that keeps you informed of news and events.


We would like to find out what you think about this publication. To take part in our quick survey please click on the student surveys list on the home page of the intranet. Alternatively email your comments, compliments or (heaven forbid) complaints to .

BEAUTY STUDENT SEAS GREAT CAREER AHEAD SERC students (L-R) Brooke Pastuszak, Beauty Therapy, Ashleigh Dickson and Laurie Gaffney, both Sports Studies, were recently crowned Northern Ireland School U19 Novice Trampoline Champions. The girls fought off tough competition from 12 other teams to secure their crown. In the individual events Ashleigh picked up a further prize when she claimed the individual U19 Novice Crown. CONGRATULATIONS GIRLS ON BECOMING NATIONAL CHAMPIONS!

College graduate Vicky Dickson has proved she has world class skills, by securing a job as a Beauty Therapist with Steiner Cruise Ships, one of the largest and most renowned Sea Spa companies in the world. Vicky, who hails from Ballynahinch, began her studies at SERC in September 2007 studying Level 2 Beauty Therapy. Upon successful completion she progressed to Level 3 which she finished in June 2009. Vicky, pictured here with lecturer Eunice Kerr, worked throughout her training in a local beauty salon where she acquired commercial experience. She attended interviews for Steiner Cruise Ships in June 2009, and was advised of her selection early in July. Vicky set off to sea at the beginning of December to embark on her new, exciting career. Bon Voyage Vicky!



Dates for Your Diary - 2010 Internet Safety Day

9 February

Mid-term Break

15 to 19 February

Students‟ Union Formal

18 February

New Website Launch


No Smoking Day

10 March

SERC Open Day

10 March

St Patrick‟s Day Holiday

17 March

Easter Break

29 March to 9 April

New Lisburn Campus Opens 19 April

Student Governor Election 12 April





COLLEGE STUDENT MEETS TAIO CRUZ College student James Hall, a second year on the BTEC National Diploma in Media Production, met chart topping R „n‟ B artist Taio Cruz whilst on placement at the Cool FM studios last year. James was on work placement with Cool FM when he had the opportunity to attend the gig in which Taio was playing. He added; “Taio Cruz is a Brit Award winning and MOBO nominated singer songwriter whose hits include the number one single “Break Your Heart”. “It was a privilege to have had the chance to meet Taio, he is a very down to earth guy and his performance at the Freedom Live gig in the Spring and Airbrake was amazing. I really enjoyed working at Cool FM and would love a career in the media in the future.”

You may have heard of singing in the rain but for SERC student Keelta Higgins, it‟s a case of singing on the train. Eighteen year old Keelta, from Glenravel, County Antrim embarks on a one hundred mile round trip everyday to attend her course, the BTEC National Diploma in Music Practice. Leaving home each morning Keelta catches a bus to Ballymena, transfers to another bus which takes her to Belfast and then heads east of the province by train arriving at Bangor in time for her first class of the day. She had this to say; “The reason I decided to travel to South Eastern Regional College was because there was nowhere locally offering the same course and the music facilities that are provided at SERC.” As part of a class which attracts students from Portadown, Lisburn and Belfast, Keelta finds herself in good company when it comes to travelling. Keelta is of course following in the footsteps of former students on similar courses in SERC‟s Bangor Campus who went on to form „Snow Patrol‟ who have sold over ten million albums worldwide.

FULL-TIME HIGHER EDUCATION AT SERC The College offers a wide range of higher education courses through degree, foundation degree and higher national diplomas. With excellent links to Universities such as Queens University, University of Ulster, Liverpool John Moores, Leeds Metropolitan and Napier University, you have the opportunity to take your education even further!



The annual Make Your Mark Challenge seen four teams of students from the College compete in the UK‟s largest enterprise challenge for secondary schools and colleges. The theme for this years challenge was “Don‟t be a Carbon Copy” and teams were asked to come up with a product idea with a local link and a low carbon footprint. This years winning team came from the Bangor Campus. Students Chris Heanue, Patrick Kelly, Sian Devon, Ashleigh Johnston, Keisha Breen and Jennie Wright came up with the idea of a Bluetooth panic button connected to a mobile phone. When triggered, it alerts the police of your location with the use of the GPS chip in your phone.

Sherida Burns was presented with her award by Down District Councillor Dermot Curran. Also pictured is Nathan Smyth who was awarded “Best Business Plan”. Media Studies student Sherida Burns was awarded the 2009 Dermot Curran Young Achiever Award. The Awards are designed to recognise outstanding individuals who have demonstrated the entrepreneurial spirit and determination needed to achieve success in the world of business.

Ashleigh Johnston and Patrick Kelly examine a solar powered robot during the Make Your Mark Challenge.

Her idea “Got Guts?” is an ongoing film “festival” where members pay to watch or submit locally made indie productions. Young members of society are encouraged to make and submit their own short films and watch those of others. Membership also includes access to mentoring from experienced film makers.



College students participated in an Entrepreneurship Master class held in Lisburn Civic Centre. During the Master class, students learned how to identify the key entrepreneurial skills required to start their own business, including who to approach concerning financial matters and business advice.

The College Business Innovation Unit has launched an enterprise website to support business start-up and entrepreneurship The website can provide insight into creating a business idea, business support, marketing, legal advice and financial planning.

SERC Staff (L-R) Geraldine Boden, Olivia Kennedy and Mary Enright are pictured with guest speaker Billy Dixon (centre) and Downpatrick students Daniel McKendry, Danielle Kearney, Roisin Grant and Tricia McConville.

COLLEGE TRAINING RESTAURANTS - ALL STUDENTS WELCOME... Each College Campus has a training restaurant which is serviced by catering and hospitality students. You can avail of these excellent facilities at a discounted price on the following days/times: Location Bangor




How to Book?

The Birches

Wednesday and Thursday Tuesday evenings. Food orders taken from Food orders from 12.15 - 1.00pm 6.15pm – 7.00pm

9127 6772 or


8.30 - 1.30pm daily


No booking required.


McNeill Room


Food orders from Thursday 5pm - 6pm


Bagatelle - D Floor Coffee 10.30 - 11.30am daily Lunch Mon 12noon - 1.00pm Tues 12.30pm - 2.30pm Wed 12.30pm - 2.00pm Thurs 12.30pm - 2.30pm

No booking required

The Willows

No booking required.


8.30am – 1.30pm daily

STEP CLOSER TO NEW LISBURN CAMPUS OPENING The £22 million investment in a new Campus building in Lisburn is on course to open on schedule in April 2010.


Book at the Lisburn front Reception for lunch.

NEW FULL-TIME PROSPECTUS Our new prospectus detailing all full-time courses across SERC will be available from mid-February. Grab your copy from reception!

All work is on target but in preparation for this we must advise you that there will be some disruption between January and April due to the decant and demolition of parts of the old building. We would ask for patience during this transition period.

Students' Union Valentines Formal Stormont Hotel, Belfast Thursday 18 February 2010 6:30pm to late Strictly formal Dress Code £30 per ticket Contact for tickets

Sports Lecturers Alan Simpson and Jacqui Finney pack up their resources in preparation for the move.


UNITE AGAINST HATE CAMPAIGN Since its launch in September 2009, the Unite against Hate Campaign has gone from strength to strength. The multi-agency driven initiative highlights all six forms of hate crime including homophobia, racism, sectarianism and transphobia as well as prejudices based around a person‟s faith or disability and challenges everyone in Northern Ireland to unite to stop it.

Keelin McGrogan - Student Affairs Officer On behalf of the Students‟ Union of SERC I would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year.

On the 11 January the College became a partner of the Unite against Hate Campaign. Over the coming months there will be a range of different events and activities taking place that will continue to challenge notions of prejudice and hate in Northern Ireland.

You may already be aware that there has been a slight change to the set-up of the Students‟ Union. My colleague Jenny Reid, who would have overseen activities in the Bangor and Newtownards campuses is now off on maternity leave. Jenny had a New Years day baby girl Alicia weighing 7lbs 6oz. In her absence I can be contacted regarding all Students‟ Union related issues at or


Adrianne Peltz, SERC Student Governor and Plumbing student Aiden Flanagan, met Cool FM DJ Pete Snodden at the launch of the Unite Against Hate Campaign.


Beauty Therapy students were on hand to give manicures during the Re-Freshers Fair. The Re-Freshers fair provided you with the opportunity to speak with different organisations regarding issues such as mental health, anti-bullying, drug, alcohol and substance abuse, sexual health Personal and Road safety. We hope you found it beneficial.

Add us as a friend by searching SERC SU

On 9 February 2010, the Safer Internet Day will focus on privacy with the slogan "Think B4 U post!" with the aim of helping people make informed choices regarding the disclosure of their private information.


Passing your driving test opens up a whole new world of freedom and independence. However statistics show that drivers are most at risk of having an accident in the first 2 years after they pass their test. 1 in 5 newly qualified drivers has a crash of some description within a year. You may be aware that just before Christmas a student from our Downpatrick Campus was killed in a tragic road accident. We would like to take this opportunity to raise awareness of the dangers and risks faced on the roads. Please take heed of the following advice; Speeding – slow down, it is not cool to speed Over 700 people a year are killed in crashes in which someone exceeds the speed limit or drives too fast for the conditions. Drink Driving – don’t do it Over 450 people a year die in crashes in which someone was over the legal drink drive limit. Seat Belt Wearing – buckle up Nearly 400 lives each year could be saved if everyone always wore their seat belt. Careless Driving – take it easy and be careful Over 400 deaths a year involve someone being „careless, reckless or in a hurry‟. SAFETY DOESN’T HAPPEN BY ACCIDENT - PLEASE TAKE CARE, FOR YOUR SAKE AND FOR OTHERS.


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Adrianne Peltz - SERC Student Governor Hello fellow students, I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself as Adrianne Peltz, SERC Student Governor. My role is to represent student views on the Board of Governors and highlight the issues and opinions of my fellow students on how the College is run. During my time as the Governor of SERC, I would like to present a unified voice of the student to senior management, in order for them to understand the issues that face students today - particularly in a recession. I am an international student, originating from South Africa – and before anyone asks I can‟t get any free tickets to the World Cup...I am currently studying a BA Business Management degree at the Bangor Campus. To Bangor students I may be a familiar face however during the course of the new term I will be visiting the other campuses to meet with as many students as possible and get your views, ideas and feedback on the College. If you would like to contact me with any questions or suggestions e-mail me at or


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Student Express  

Find out what has been going on in SERC from Jan - April 2010