Express & Star

'This should happen more often!' Students gather for tea, cakes and networking at Big Lunch

Hundreds of students around colleges in the West Midlands sat down for afternoon tea and for guidance on their futures.


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Over one thousand people have attended lunches, afternoon teas and picnics under the Big Lunch banner to celebrate everything that makes the West Midlands great.

Wolverhampton College hosted one such event last week, with young people taking the chance to network, socialise and share experiences with representatives from around the area.

The event saw dozens of influential members of the public attend the event, including the West Midlands Deputy Lieutenant Martin Livermore.

West Midlands Deputy Lieutenant Martin Levermore with Davie Carns, CEO at NIS Group, Deputy Principal Louise Fall and Governor Sam Duru

Gbemisoke Adekunle, an Information Technologies student at Wolverhampton College, said: "It is really nice. It is great to see all the students meeting and talking, and it is very interactive.

"It's great to get together and talk about the stuff we like and what we are learning. I'm currently doing coding and the Deputy Lieutenant was asking how we would use it and was talking about the future of the internet.

"It's also great to talk about the younger generation, to network and to ask questions. It has been great to bring the community together. It should happen more often."

Guests enjoyed the Big Lunch event at City of Wolverhampton College, Wellington Road Campus

The event saw teachers, students and a range of diverse locals come together to socialise and share experiences while also talking about important aspects of the community.

Talking about her experiences at the event, Rebecca Bunger, head of youth work at The Way Youth Zone, said: "We have been having a lovely time here today. It has been really fantastic.

"It's really important that these events take place to showcase the range of talent our young people have and to kind of turn around those negative perceptions of teenagers that we sometimes see today.

"It's amazing to see what these young people are enjoying, what they are passionate about and also to learn about the journey they are starting to make. It would be great for events like these to happen more often, particularly in the West Midlands where people often feel disadvantaged."

Deputy Principal Louise Fall with Governor Sam Duru

The events across the West Midlands were also visited by the Lord-Lieutenant for the West Midlands, Sir John Crabtree, who said he is 'pleased to be supporting' these community events.

Sir John said: "I’m delighted that so many colleges from right across the region are getting involved with this year’s Big Lunch. Launched last year to coincide with the Coronation, the initiative has really taken off and is set to be bigger and better than ever.

"With a sustainable and environmentally friendly theme this year, the West Midlands Lieutenancy is pleased to be supporting these important community events and we hope everyone has a great time."