Pioneering work at Medina College to provide a new qualification in agriculture has been supported by local company Wight Building Materials.

From September, the college will become only the 3rd in the UK to offer students an IGCSE – International General Certificate of Secondary Education – in agriculture.

Although students acquire much of their learning at some of the farms on the island, they will also use facilities such as a new farm garden at the college itself.

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To help create this facility, Wight Building Materials recently delivered 2 tonnes of concrete free of charge to provide the foundations for the outbuildings.

Victoria Lloyd, Senior Lecturer for Agriculture at Medina College, says:

“Our first batch of students are ready to go and very excited about this new educational opportunity we are offering here at the college.

“To support their learning, students will gain experience at some of the fantastic island farms that support us. Other aspects of agriculture will be taught here at the college, including soil structure and the development and growth of fruits and vegetables.

“To do that, we need good quality facilities here and we are very happy and very grateful that Wight Building Materials has helped us provide them.

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“Delivering the concrete gave us a solid foundation for two hangars we are currently building – the support from Wight Building Materials has made a huge difference!

Steve Burton, managing director of Wight Building Materials, said:

“As a local business, we are passionate about providing high-quality employment opportunities for young people on the island, so we were very pleased to be able to help this important, forward-thinking college initiative. “

The IGCSE in Agriculture is equivalent to the GCSE qualification which is taken by students in Years 10-11 in the UK to prepare them for further study at pre-university level, such as A Levels.

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