Pictured above: The graduating HNC Students and those that started their journey in 2018, together at the Academy in Telford
Our first cohort of students have now completed their first two years and will be graduating this summer with their HNC and moving on to the HND next September. It has been a long journey for the LIA and has taken real determination and drive to reach the point where the sad devoid of formal qualifications was no longer an issue for the lighting industry. Two years in, the success of the qualification is unquestionable, and places are now being allocated for two more new cohorts of students to start in September 2019.
The LIA has invested in this initiative because the size and number of potential learners in the Lighting Industry were never large enough to make it economically viable for traditional training providers and academic institutions to gear up to offer industry specific qualifications.
With technology changing rapidly a much wider lighting community now needs high quality, up to date lighting education that encompasses a wider range of new and different skills. One of the challenges of developing an HNC/HND in Lighting Design and Technology was to establish a breadth of syllabus with relevance right across the range of roles engaged in modern day lighting.
To test this out the first cohort of students couldn’t have been a better mix i.e. from manufacturing, lighting design, local authority street lighting, technical lighting and general engineering. Over the first two years the student and employer feedback has been exceptional.
Generally, the qualification caters for students who are in employment. The course is crafted so students learn in blocks and time away from the workplace is kept to the minimum. One module of learning is held at the University campus in Pontypridd, with the rest at the Academy in Telford where the LIA ‘state of the art Lighting Laboratory’ is used to enrich the learner’s experience. The rest of the course is self-learning, research, some presentational pieces, projects and formal assessment.