SET for Teaching Success: Chris Fairclough

Chris Fairclough

Chris is currently a Lecturer in Nuclear Plant and Academic Lead for Degree Apprenticeships (Nuclear) at Lakes College and the National College for Nuclear. He is an Incorporated Engineer with the SOE and IPlantE and is qualified to Bachelors Level in Nuclear Plant Operations and Processes. Chris worked in the Nuclear industry for eight years with Sellafield Ltd as a Technical Support Engineer (Fuel Consolidation and Storage).

Why did you choose to teach in Further Education and work with the SET for Teaching Success programme?

I chose to enter Further Education as I always felt I had an affinity towards training during my industrial years. I had been doing some guest lecturing on the foundation degree that my fellow colleagues were completing and I decided that training and education was for me!

Entering FE doesn’t mean that you will only teach at Levels 3 and below. Many colleges deliver Higher Education as well as traditional FE and I believe that this is a big misconception of FE. The SET Programme has enabled me to communicate with a wider range of trainee teachers who are of a science or technical background. During the SET project conferences, we all share our experiences and give each other advice regarding teaching practices and the PGCE.

What do you like about teaching in Further Education?

I love teaching in FE. Lakes College is like one big family and I enjoy working with people who have the same objectives – to give the students the best possible learning experience to increase their chance of employment. I currently deliver at Levels 3 to 6 (A Levels up to Bachelor’s Degree) and I enjoy delivering at all of these levels, due to the diversity of the teaching styles required.

What have been the benefits so far from the SET for Teaching Success Programme?

The SET for Teaching Success Programme has enhanced my experience as a trainee teacher by giving me the opportunity to converse with fellow technical trainee teachers, who are going through the same highs and lows as me. The range of guest speakers and the content that is covered really helps give the wider picture within FE.

What do you see yourself doing in the future?

I want to stay in FE for the foreseeable future. I am an ambitious person and FE allows you to be ambitious. There is room to grow as a teacher, as a mentor, as a student and as a manager if you so wish. I am now Project Managing an OTLA project on behalf of the Principal of Lakes College.

Interested in the SET for Teaching Success programme? Find out more.

Share this article: