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Olympic Mascot drops in to Student Games


Cornwall College students received a special visit on Tuesday 14 December as Olympic mascot Wenlock arrived in St Austell to present awards at this week’s Student Games.

Cornwall College has just been announced as the 50th college in the UK to join the Get Set network, the official London 2012 education programme set up by Podium, the Further and Higher Education Unit for the 2012 Games, to encourage more young people to get actively involved in the Games. 

To mark the occasion one of the two Olympic mascots for London 2012, Wenlock, joined students at an awards ceremony at Polkyth Leisure Centre after the College’s own Student Games, where they were also presented with a plaque to acknowledge their involvement in the London 2012 education programme.

Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), said: “When London won the right to host the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games, we made a clear promise to use the power of the 2012 Games to inspire young people.

“I am proud to welcome Cornwall College in to the Get Set network for their exciting work around the Olympic Values of friendship, excellence and respect and the Paralympic Values of inspiration, courage, determination and equality.”

The Student Games, held annually in December, took place at various sporting venues in St Austell over two days.  Over 300 students competed from the College’s seven campuses - in Camborne, Newquay, Saltash, St Austell, Duchy College Stoke Climsland and Rosewarne, and Falmouth Marine School – in disciplines including volleyball, netball, football, hockey, rugby, trampolining, basketball, swimming, tennis, badminton and table tennis. 

Alison Martin, 16, from St Stephen, who is studying the Public Services Extended Diploma, really enjoyed the swimming events.  She said: I have always enjoyed swimming and it was great to have the chance to take part in some competitive swimming for the first time.   I really enjoyed the student games and will look forward to more opportunities to get involved in the future. These games really have inspired me.”

After day one St Austell pulled out in front with a 40 point lead on Camborne.  Day two saw some excellent competition including the big upset Duchy College beating Camborne in the volleyball final. The final results saw reigning champions St Austell retain the trophy with Camborne in second place and Duchy College in third.

Gareth Smith, LOCOG Further and Higher Education Advisor and Head of Podium, said: “Congratulations to Cornwall College on becoming the 50th College in the Get Set network.  The College’s work in engaging their students showcases how the Games values and the gold dust of London 2012 is reaching out to all parts of the UK.  The innovative work of the College around their Olympic inspired Student Games has been particularly visionary and is a great example of the different ways that Colleges can encourage their students to play their part in the Games.”

Russell Lawrance, Director of Sport at Cornwall College, said: “We are using the 2012 Games to inspire our students and staff and partners in other schools to be part of the action.  The programme gives us an opportunity to celebrate the unique nature of Cornwall, its culture and environment and we are using the Olympic Values to encourage students to live by the ideals of endeavour and being the best they can be.

“The student games give all of our students the chance to play sport and represent their campus and region within the Cornwall College Group.  This is a unique feature we can offer learners.”

Cornwall College has already seen success at Paralympic level with St Austell swimmer Jonathan Fox, a former sports student, who picked up a silver medal in the 100 metre backstroke at the 2008 Beijing Olympics whilst studying at the St Austell campus.

Dave Linnell, Principal of Cornwall College, said: “Cornwall College puts a great emphasis on allowing all those who want to take part in sporting activities to do so, no matter what their ability.  Events like these bring the student population together from the different campuses and allow them to compete in a fun and friendly environment.

“It is excellent that this ethos has been recognised and that the College has been able to become a part of the Get Set network.”

For further media details, please contact Josie Scobling, Press Officer for Cornwall College on (01752) 850242 / 07780 222853 or email