Tourism student set for cabin crew job after scooping special award at FE Celebration

June 2019

A University College Birmingham student is getting ready for her career to take off - after securing her first job with an airline.

Isobel Russell will begin training with UK airline Jet2.com in July after successfully progressing through numerous interview and assessment phases to win a role working in cabin crew.

It was a swift process for the Level 3 Travel and Tourism Extended Diploma student, who passed a telephone interview before being invited to an assessment and selection day.

And after demonstrating her abilities through individual and group activities, Isobel was selected for a final interview with Jet2 staff before being told she had got the job.

"I'm very excited to start my career with Jet2.com - although I'm nervous too!" said Isobel. "I'm looking forward to meeting my new colleagues and getting started.

"I’ve always wanted to be cabin crew. I love travelling and want to do more of it, so it’s the perfect opportunity."

Isobel revealed how her studies at UCB had helped her through the assessment process on her way to securing her new position, as well as preparing her for the industry.

"I didn't have the greatest amount of confidence, so individual presentations as part of my college work really helped," she said. "I found it a lot easier to do than I would have a few years ago.

"The different variety of assignments have helped my confidence and my knowledge of customer service and the travel and tourism industry massively.

"My lecturer Anne McCarron contacted a previous student who was also cabin crew for Jet2, and she gave me some tips for on the day."

It meant there was double cause for celebration this week for Isobel, who also received a special award from UCB at the University's Further Education (FE) Student Celebration Event held at Birmingham's Town Hall this week.

Isobel was one of three students presented with the John Slaughter Memorial Award, which recognises students who display outstanding commitment and overcome personal obstacles to study.

"I am happy that my challenges at home have been recognised and that my hard work has been rewarded," said Isobel. "I was so nervous to go on stage to receive the award because I have never been awarded anything like this before!"

Anne McCarron, Senior Curriculum Leader for Travel and Tourism, praised Isobel for her achievements.

"Isobel is a very bright individual,” said Anne. “She secured her job role with Jet2 very quickly.

"She is looking forward to travelling more and working full-time to gain more experience of the tourism industry."

Isobel was one of the many award winners at the University’s FE Celebration Event, where UCB celebrated the achievements of all Level 3 students who have successfully completed their course.

Emily Homer and Megan Finn-Chalmers were also named winners of the John Slaughter Memorial Award, while Gunnar Lyons picked up the Helen Betteridge Memorial Award.

Other awards presented at the event included the FE Outstanding Students of the Year, honouring students for academic achievement and outstanding performance. This year’s winners were Emily Glover, Ricardo Balla, Amy Whelan, Vanessa Chiweshe, Neve Cullerne, William Boyden and Hannah Thornton.

Meanwhile, there was also recognition for the University's lecturers, with Andrew Bisconti, Megan Dixon, Sarah McCarthy and Anne McCarron picking up the Spotlight on Great Teaching Awards, designed to recognise significant contributions by staff to the academic journey of UCB students.

Nominations were received from more than 650 students, with the winners selected by a cross-University panel including representation from The Guild of Students.

Find out more about our wide range of college courses at UCB here.


FE Special Award Winners 2018/19

John Slaughter Memorial Award

Emily Homer - BIIAB Level 3 Diploma in Professional Cookery (Preparation and Cooking)

Megan Finn-Chalmers - NCFE CACHE Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care

Isobel Russell - Edexcel BTEC Extended Diploma in Travel and Tourism


Helen Betteridge Memorial Award

Gunnar Lyons - Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Sport Development Coaching and Fitness (AASE Boxing)


FE Outstanding Students of the Year

·        School of Education, Health and Community: Emily Glover - CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator)

·        The Business School: Ricardo Balla - BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma in Business

·        School of Sport and Creative Services: Amy Whelan - Edexcel BTEC Extended Diploma in Sport (Development, Coaching and Fitness)

·        College of Food: Vanessa Chiweshe - BIIAB Level 3 Diploma in Professional Cookery (Preparation and Cooking)

·        English Student: Neve Cullerne - VTCT Level 3 Diploma in Theatrical, Special Effects, Hair and Media Make-up

·        Mathematics Student: William Boyden - BIIAB Level 3 Diploma in Professional Cookery (Preparation and Cooking)

·        Placement Student: Hannah Thornton - VTCT Level 3 Diploma in Theatrical, Special Effects, Hair and Media Make-up


Spotlight on Great Teaching Awards

Andrew Bisconti - Lecturer, Food Service

Megan Dixon - Lecturer, Sport

Sarah McCarthy - Lecturer, Health and Social Care

Anne McCarron - Senior Curriculum Leader, Travel and Tourism

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