Norwich students swapping classrooms for Mongololian yurts

Students at City College Norwich are to be taught in Mongolian-style yurts as part of a new partnership with an activity centre, which aims to make its outdoor adventure course one of the best in the country.

The yurts are the centrepiece of a link up between City College Norwich and Eaton Vale Activity Centre, forging closer ties between the academic course and industry.

The Sport (Outdoor Adventure) BTEC Extended Diploma is a practical, work-related course that prepares students for careers in outdoor adventure.

Being based at Eaton Vale's 14-acre site means the students will benefit from combining learning and practical training at one of Norfolk's main providers of outdoor activities.

The two yurts, traditional Mongolian wood and fabric dome structures, will be used as classrooms by the outdoor adventure students, each seating up to 24 people.

Richard Lang, operations manager at Eaton Vale, said: 'The benefits of this partnership are that we are producing work-ready staff for local and national providers of outdoor activities.

'The course allows staff to integrate with students, sharing their experience and giving them an unrivalled start to their careers or when applying to outdoor industry universities such as Bangor or Cumbria'.

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While on the two-year course students develop instructor skills, logbook experience and gain qualifications in pursuits, including canoeing, kayaking, mountain biking and climbing.

The City College course is unique in offering the BCU UKCC Level 1 Coach in Paddle Sport, the Climbing Wall Supervisors Award (CWSA) and Mountain Bike Instructors Award Scheme (MIAS) Level 1 and 2 training. City College Norwich principal Dick Palmer said 'Basing our outdoor adventure students at a commercial activity centre is a real coup.

'Combining classroom study in the on-site yurts alongside access to a full range of activities means the students can spend more time gaining their qualifications and getting relevant industry experience under their belts.

'This is a fantastic development that will really help prepare the students for successful careers.'

For more details about the Outdoor Adventure course call 01603 773773 or email

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