Heart of Worcestershire College’s Amy Hollier Awarded Education and Training Foundation-Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 Technical Teaching Fellowship!

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Heart of Worcestershire College’s Amy Hollier Awarded Education and Training Foundation-Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 Technical Teaching Fellowship!

14 February 2023

Picture of Amy Hollier

Amy Hollier, Director of Blended and Online Learning at Heart of Worcestershire College (HoW College), has been awarded a Technical Teaching Fellowship for the 2023–24 academic year.  

The Fellowships are awarded jointly by the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) and Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 with the aim of promoting excellence in technical STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) teaching in Further Education. The Technical Teaching Fellowships were established in 2018 with Fellows being announced annually since 2019. 

Fellows are expected to develop knowledge exchange and transfer activities to maximise the benefit of their Fellowships, sharing and disseminating their effective practice at national and regional conferences and contributing to CPD facilitation, and the delivery of a final report to engage technical education practitioners in their area of subject specialist expertise. They receive a financial award to support their activity and guarantee remission time. They also become Fellows of both the Royal Commission and the Society for Education and Training. As alumni of the programme, they remain part of a technical community of practice that works sustainably to further support excellence in STEM teaching. 

Amy joined the Further Education and Training sector after a career in the hospitality industry. She is passionate about new approaches to teaching and learning using technology and in 2012 developed a food and wine pairing app – one of the first smartphone apps to be produced in education – which had over 30,000 downloads. Her current role sees her managing the national Blended Learning Consortium, which is made up of 162 colleges. She is a member of the BETT UK Advisory Board and the DfE Digital Technology & Standards Working Group representing the FE sector. Her Fellowship will focus on stimulating further enhancement in technical education through digital advances across a range of vocational industries. 

Amy will be formally presented with her award at a celebration event at the Royal Society on 3 March 2023, along with the other Fellows selected for the 2023–24 academic year: Paul Gartside of South-Central Institute/MK (Milton Keynes) College, Bradley Collier and Kumaran Rajarathinam of Blackburn College, and Kevin Pollard of MKC (Mid-Kent College) Training. 

Applications for Technical Teaching Fellowships are assessed against criteria including the demonstration of effective approaches to improving teaching and learning in technical STEM education, the potential to inspire others, and the planning of professional development opportunities to impact positively on other teachers’ pedagogy and professional practice. 

Professor Dame Ann Dowling OM FRS FREng, Commissioner and chair of the Industry and Engineering Committee of the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851, said: 

“An effective and highly regarded FE sector is vital to developing and maintaining the skilled workforce so needed by businesses across the UK. I am delighted that these awards recognise and celebrate outstanding teachers in Further Education. I have been particularly impressed by the way previous recipients have used their Technical Teaching Fellowships to extend the visibility and reach of their work. Through working with employers, driving curriculum developments, sharing best practice and inspiring others, they are supporting widespread improvements in technical teaching to the benefit of many learners.” 

Cerian Ayres, the Education and Training Foundation’s National Head of Technical Education, said:  

“Our congratulations go to the successful applicants for the 2023–24 Technical Teaching Fellowships. These awards recognise leading lights in technical education across Further Education and Training, supporting them to share their practice for the benefit of the whole sector. Fellows join a community of practice that has a demonstrable, sustainable impact and we look forward to working with them as they follow in their predecessors’ footsteps, enhancing and strengthening the capability of technical teaching and helping to address the economic, social, environmental and climate challenges the world is facing.” 

Speaking about the award, Amy Hollier said: 

“It’s an honour to have been awarded such a prestigious Fellowship. I look forward to working with colleagues from across the sector to further develop the amazing work that goes on in FE.” 

Well done, Amy, this is an amazing achievement!