Students have been learning the tricks of a trade at a training centre in South Kirkby.
The Wakefield South East Training and Enterprise Centre, on Brigantian Way, South Kirkby Business Park, offers a number of courses in hairdressing, beauty and construction and catering skills.
The £3.2m centre - which opened in 2011 - is a partnership between Hemsworth Arts and Community Academy, Minsthorpe Community College and Oakfield Park School, Ackworth. It has beauty and hair salons, wet and dry construction training rooms, a working and training kitchen, café, three computer suites, conference rooms and a sensory room.
The Serenity Hair and Beauty salon runs NVQ levels one and two and a NVQ fast track in hairdressing - which are delivered by Dimensions Training Solutions - and NVQ levels two and three beauty therapy. Hairdressing students are given an opportunity to enhance their skills by training in a salon one day a week.
The salon is open to the public, so that students can practice their skills and treatments. Visitors can take advantage of discounted prices, including a facial for £6.50, a back massage for £4, a deluxe manicure for £4.50 or a spray tan for £8.50.
The centre offers BTEC level one and two in construction, with students learning trades such as painting and decorating, tiling, joinery and bricklaying.
Staff at the centre have also been developing strong links with Kier construction firm, which is building a waste management facility on the former colliery site. Post-16 students at Oakfield Park have also been picking up the tricks of the building trade and are developing catering skills in the training kitchen.
The centre’s conference and seminar rooms are available for hire, as are the auditorium and ICT suites, which have state-of-the art equipment and video projection.
Louise Perry, provision co-ordinator at the site, said: “We are delivering professional qualifications to post 16 students from Hemsworth, Minsthorpe and Oakfield colleges. Not every teenager wants to go to college to learn mathematics or English - they want a trade, a vocational qualification.
“We have a very high percentage of students who get jobs or apprenticeships - 100 per cent last year and 95 per cent the year before.
“Students from Oakfield Park are getting hands on experience within a professional environment. It is all about teaching them life skills and increasing their confidence.”
For more information or to book a hair and beauty treatment, visit www.wsetec.com or call 01977 722108.