Students shared their views on tackling racism with a black Metropolitan Police officer during a series of events at Capital City College Group (CCCG) to mark Black History Month.

Inspector Chris Excell, who has served the Met for 15 years, was among the guests invited to give talks to students at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL).

Insp Excell shared his experience of being a black police officer, a brief history of black police officers in Britain and his role as the Chair of the Black Police Association at the Met.

Students at CONEL also heard from Corporal Nyerere St John who spoke about being a black soldier in the British Army and gave his advice on careers in the Armed Forces.

There were also talks and presentations on black history, the slave trade, Marie Seacole, black Olympians, black footballers, black scientists and inventors, black hair and beauty, black music and the screening of a documentary on the Windrush generation.

Metropolitan Police Inspector Chris Excell, who is also a member of the Metropolitan Black Police Association (MBPA), spoke to students at The College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London, about his career and how former members of the MBPA have strived to carve and strengthen their place as part of the public services. ‘We are black all year round,’ said Excell. ‘Black History Month is really a time to celebrate, come together and not be the only person in the room to celebrate each other.” Find out more about courses we have that will support your future your career joining the public services by visiting

City and Islington College (CANDI) hosted a Chat and Chillax session where students took part in a discussion about Black History Month, what it means to them, why it is important and ways to tackle racism in society.

Students also participated in workshops where they wrote positive affirmations to promote more tolerance in society on leaf-shaped pieces of paper that were then stuck to a large picture of a ‘tree of hope’ for their peers to read.

Among the uplifting messages placed on the tree were ‘Everyone is allowed to live freely’, ‘Respect each other’, ‘Love each other’ and ‘Educate ourselves and others.’

The atrium at Westminster Kingsway College’s King’s Cross Centre was adorned with flags from countries around the world to represent the diversity of its staff and students.

Students heard talks from guest speakers from BAME backgrounds including entrepreneur Tlwalola Ogunles, youth mentor Luke Malillah, actor and presenter Jordan Kensington, social mobility advocate Kevin Osei, property investor TJ Atkinson and WestKing administrator Lorna Blackman.

They were also encouraged to read books by black authors in the college’s Learning Resource Centre including Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman, Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams and Slay in Your Lane by Elizabeth Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinené.

There were screenings off Becoming, the documentary on life of former US First Lady Michelle Obama, and Rocks, a drama about a black teenage girl and her brother in Hackney whose mum abandons them, forcing them to try and avoid being taken into social care.

Music students also put on live performances of their own songs inspired by black music.

CCCG runs many enrichment activities across its three colleges for students personal and professional development. Find out more about Student Life at WestKing here.

With the academic year well under way, Year 11 students are now settling into their final year of school and knuckling down ahead of their GCSEs next summer.

Many will also be thinking about their future, and it is important for them to realise that staying on at school sixth form is not the only or always the best option.

Here’s six fantastic reasons why they should choose Westminster Kingsway College (WestKing) over school when it comes to taking the next step in their education.

  • A bigger choice of qualifications and pathways – Whether you want to take the academic or technical route to university or employment we have the right course for you. Choose from A Levels, BTEC and City & Guilds diplomas and certificates, apprenticeships with top employers, along with our first T Levels.
  • A huge range of subjects – We offer A Levels in many subjects along with courses in accounting and business, IT, creative media, art and design, construction, childcare, engineering, hospitality and culinary arts, music and performing arts, public services, science and sport.
  • Students are treated like adults – There’s no ‘Yes Sir’ or ‘Yes Miss’ here. Students are often on first name terms with the teachers and given the personal responsibility for getting their work assignments done. Of course, we will still encourage, motivate and support our students to succeed.
  • Make new friends – A chance to widen your social circle and get to know more people. The more you broaden your horizons, the more opportunities that are presented to you in work and life.
  • Industry experienced teachers – Many of our lecturers and tutors have worked in the fields they teach and are able to share first-hand knowledge and experience to give students the professional skills and realistic expectations of their future careers.
  • Fantastic enrichment and support – Students benefit from a more rounded education including trips at home and abroad, talks from industry experts, debates and workshops, competitions, community projects, sports, clubs and societies, careers advice and support with UCAS applications.


  • King’s Cross Centre –Wednesday 2 November from 4.30pm to 6.30pm
  • Victoria Centre (includes Soho Centre) – Monday 7 November from 4.30pm to 6.30pm

Book a place at our Open Days here and apply for our courses and apprenticeships here.

When Fadi Faroukh arrived in the UK after fleeing war-torn Syria as a teenager he had been deprived of education for five years and was unable to speak English.

Fast-forward another three years and the former Westminster Kingsway College student is now studying for a MEng Civil Engineering at the University of Bristol.

The devastation of the ongoing civil war in the Arab state has so far claimed the lives of more than 300,000 people including members of Fadi’s family and friends.

“If you went out of your house, maybe just to get food, you knew you might not come back. There were air strikes all the time,” said Fadi, 20, who now lives in Neasden, north London.

“You’d see the bombs coming down from the planes but don’t know where they’re going to land. That’s the scary thing. You cannot move, you just stare and think maybe I’m going to die.

“A lot of my cousins and uncles died and my friend as well. Thank God I left, and I’m here.”

The war ended Fadi’s school education in Syria when he was 10 and a year later he began working with his father in construction and then as a car mechanic.

After arriving in the UK, he started at The Crest Boys’ Academy in Neasden in Year 10 where he gained GCSEs in English, maths and science and an A Level in Arabic in 2019.

Fadi went on to achieve a Distinction on an Engineering Level 3 Diploma and an A* in A Level Maths at WestKing to secure his place at university where he has just completed his first year.

“Not all colleges offer you the chance to study a BTEC in Engineering and A Level Maths. It’s a very rare combination and the perfect way to get to university or an apprenticeship and the reason I chose WestKing,” said Fadi.

“Another good thing about this college, is that it brings in engineers every month or so, which is a really good opportunity to ask questions about their career and what you will be doing in the future.”


Engineering at WestKing

Our engineering courses are amongst the best in the country, with many of our students excelling on work placements, progressing to university and realising their career aspirations.
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Fadi took A Level Maths because he saw it as “the foundation of engineering” but is a strong advocate of the BTEC in preparing him for university and his career.

He said: “With the BTEC you learn more about engineering and the subject you are interested in studying at university and what you are going to be doing in real life, rather than A Levels which only offer physics and chemistry for this kind of career. For me, it’s a better choice.”

Fadi welcomed the support he had from his teachers at WestKing both in developing his engineering skills and improving his English and helping him to apply for university.

“At the beginning I struggled with my English, but my teachers helped me so much. If I didn’t understand something, they would sit with me and explain it. They were all very supportive,” he said.

“Everything has changed since I came to the UK. Now I’m at one of the best universities in the UK doing what I love.”

Engineering is one of the UK’s largest sectors employing 5.5 million people and is also one of the broadest with careers in mechanical, electrical, chemical, and civil engineering as well as new green technologies. Find out more about our Engineering courses and apply here.

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211 Grays Inn Road
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Peter Street
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 Part of Capital City College Group
Part of Capital City College Group