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OCR today celebrates 25 years of vocational qualifications created from its offices at Progress House in Coventry. OCR is marking the milestone with events for staff and partners from schools, colleges and businesses in the local area.
Progress House in Coventry was opened in 1990 by HRH Prince Philip, and was originally designed for the Royal Society of Arts Examinations Board, who merged with the University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate a few years later to become OCR. The RSAEB first started running exams in vocational qualifications in 1856, when they offered 17 subjects ranging from agriculture to physiology to 52 candidates.
From its Coventry base, OCR has been developing vocational qualifications which prepare students with the knowledge and skills required for employment and for the community as a whole.
Partner organisations who have worked with OCR to develop their qualifications will be attending a special celebration event on the 30 November to mark the 25 year anniversary. Guests will include representatives from locally-based Jaguar Land Rover, Sidney Stringer Academy, the WMG Academy for Young Engineers, the Ryman National Enterprise Challenge and ten OCR colleagues marking their own 25 year anniversary working at the building.
Charlotte Bosworth, OCR’s Director of Skills and Employment, said: “Progress House is a real success story for Coventry. Over the last two decades, OCR has built on its RSA heritage with a range of well-known vocational qualifications taken by millions – OCR Nationals, CLAIT, to name a few. And in the last couple of years, OCR developed Cambridge Progression qualifications to fill the gap left by Basic and Key Skills. In 2015, OCR issued over half a million certificates across more than 500 vocational qualifications. The team here have accomplished a lot together over the last 25 years and it is a real pleasure to be celebrating the anniversary of the building and the 25 year anniversary of some of our colleagues.”
Les Ratcliffe, Head of Community Relations at Jaguar Land Rover, said: “We are delighted to be joining OCR to celebrate today. We have been working together with OCR’s Skills and Employment team to help develop Engineering qualifications that meet our needs as an employer. We believe that this approach is the future of professional and technical skills and it’s great that it’s all happening here in Coventry.”
Keep up to date with all the latest from OCR’s Skills and Employment team on Twitter: @ocr_vocational