College lifesaver awarded

Barry And District News: LIFESAVERS: Dean Morgan, Phil Rees and John Fairgrove LIFESAVERS: Dean Morgan, Phil Rees and John Fairgrove

A PIONEERING college lecturer has been awarded for his unique work with water safety in Wales.

Cardiff and Vale College (CAVC), Barry site, lecturer Phil Rees recently retired as an engineering lecturer, but was Welsh Lifesaver of the Year at the recent Surf Life Saving Association of Wales Awards 2013.

Phil worked to help develop a series of e-learning water safety education tools – the only ones of their kind in the world.

He secured funding from the Welsh Government, RNLI and Surf Lifesaving Wales, to establish a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) to use CAVC’s resources in developing the online teaching tools.

Under the KTP the College works with local businesses and organisations to identify current and future training needs and develop programmes to meet those requirements.

This can include bringing in a graduate who has the knowledge a firm requires, if not the experience.

Graduates gain valuable experience while filling skills gaps for local businesses. Employers that take on KTP graduates are eligible for Welsh Government grants.

Graduate Dean Morgan was employed by the Surf Lifesaving Association, under the KTP, but based at the College’s Knowledge Base – the e-learning section of CAVC’s International Centre for Aerospace Training, based at Cardiff Airport.

ICAT normally provides the aerospace industry with online training, but was happy to help Dean develop e-learning manuals for life savers.

Working with Phil, Mentor John Fairgrove and IT tutor Russell Oakley, Dean has gone on to produce four e-learning manuals that cover water safety on the beach for all ages, plus a manual covering Inshore Rescue Boat training.

The e-learning manuals are accessed through a Moodle and covered all the knowledge needed to take a variety of assessments from Nipper Surf awards (seven to 12-year-olds), to beach lifeguard qualifications.

All the manuals are a mixture of text, photographs, animations and video clips, thus bring the learning process alive and much more meaningful for the end users.

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