Jacqueline Kassteen, Owner & Managing Director, Transformative Marketing Solutions

Jacqueline Kassteen, Owner & Managing Director, Transformative Marketing Solutions

Go North Young Man! IALC heads to Leeds and York

Learn more about Leeds and York before you head off to this year’s IALC Workshop.

The IALC Workshop is an annual gathering for IALC-accredited educators and study abroad agencies from around the world, bringing together about 350 attendees from over 50 countries. IALC member institutions are located in 107 destinations around the world, offering over 1,000 language programmes in nine languages.

For over 30 years, this international language travel workshop has been a key event in the calendar for international student recruitment counsellors and agents to find high-quality study programmes for students of all ages and backgrounds. The event moves location each year, and this is the first workshop held in the UK since 1989, giving delegates the chance to experience two contrasting cities in the North of England: the modern university city of Leeds as well as the historical charms of York.

This year’s workshop is co-hosted by Centre of English Studies (CES) Leeds and Melton College, York, who will each showcase their schools during specialised tours as well as networking functions in the evenings. In addition, seven organised fam-trips will take place after the Workshop enabling agents to visit dozens of schools across the UK and Ireland.

Both host schools have been very busy this past year and are keen to share their developments with attendees. Justin Quinn, Managing Director of CES, explains, “CES runs a large number of programmes such as standard and intensive general English, English for Special Purposes, teacher training, and junior summer programmes. This year we introduced a programme with a top catering college in Dublin as well as an English Plus Cooking Course which lasts for four weeks. During the summer, we also started to run a fame academy programme.”

Meanwhile nearby in York, Melton College Principal Andrew Hjort reveals, “Melton College had a busy 53rd year with all our courses running well and attracting students from all over the world. In the College, we were busy creating a wonderful new conservatory classroom, overlooking our beautiful garden. We have also continued our investment in new technology, especially interactive whiteboards and web-based self-access learning. We have recruited new senior staff as part of our policy of moving to an all DELTA (TEFLQ) permanent academic staff team.

Melton College is fortunate to have excellent facilities (including basketball and tennis courts!) in a great location in a city that regularly tops polls for the best destination in the UK. We think this should be enjoyed by all our students, so we never take on additional teaching space, even in the high season.”

Leeds at the heart of the Northern Powerhouse

“Leeds and York represent all that is best in the North of England and it is great to have the chance to share some of what makes Yorkshire such a special place,” says Mr Quinn.

He continues: “Leeds has become a financial hub and leader of the Northern Powerhouse. The city has a great artistic heritage from, JB Priestley through Henry Moore to Alan Bennett, and is home to some of the North’s best theatre and performing arts.”

With a rich Victorian heritage and a compact, pedestrianised city centre offering an irresistible mixture of old and new, Leeds provides an ideal environment for exploration.

One of England’s leading cities, Leeds has grown from its industrial past into a city reinventing itself for the 21st century as a modern and creative destination. Renowned for art, culture, shopping, sport and leisure, Leeds is a great place to study English. And its large student population means there is plenty of nightlife with a range of pubs, clubs, bars, and live music venues.

Leeds boasts a variety of visitor attractions, many of which offer free entry. Here’s a few of our top choices:

  • The Royal Armouries: Britain’s national museum of arms and armour and Keeper of the history of the Tower of London, features more than 75,000 items from around the world.  Since the workshop is held in the same building, you can even visit the Armouries during your lunch break!
  • The Thackray Museum of Medicine: located in one of the most impressive Victorian buildings in Leeds.
  • The Henry Moore Institute: an award-winning exhibition venue on the Headrow in the city centre’s cultural hub. It is a modern extension to the City Art Gallery, which houses a fine collection of work by 19th and 20th century British artists, including Turner, Spencer and Constable.
  • Kirkstall Abbey: set in a park on the banks of the river Aire, this is one of the most complete examples of a medieval Cistercian Abbey in Britain.  Across the road is the Abbey House museum, which recreates Victorian Leeds and gives an insight into monastery life.
  • The Leeds Industrial Museum: housed in what was once the world’s largest woolen mill, you’ll learn the story of manufacturing in the North and the often harsh conditions in the textile, printing, engineering and locomotive industries for which the area is famous.
  • Leeds shopping arcades: the Victoria Quarter, home to more than 70 major designer brands, is a restoration of the old Victorian arcades blended with new features, including a magnificent stained glass roof and three stunning mosaic floor panels.
  • Kirkgate Market: birthplace of the Marks and Spencer Empire, is one of Europe’s largest indoor markets, with traders that go back generations, offering everything from food and drink to flowers, fashion, hardware and haberdashery.
  • The Leeds Arena: a popular venue for indoor sports, live music and other events.
  • Roundhay Park: one of the largest city parks in Europe with over 700 acres of parkland, lakes, woodland and gardens.
  • Live sports: catch a football match at Elland Road, the home of Leeds United, or watch cricket or rugby at Headingley Stadium, home to the Yorkshire County Cricket Club.
  • Performances: see a musical at The Grand, ballet at West Yorkshire Playhouse, comedy at the Carriageworks, or a world famous superstar at the first direct Arena.

Museums, shops, restaurants, night clubs, maps… find even more information to organise your trip on the Visit Leeds website.

York rich in history and charm

As a centre of history, academia and contemporary style in a wonderfully scenic setting, York is a favourite English language destination in the North of England.

Mr Hjort explains: “York, the historic Capital of the North has 2,000 years of history from the Romans, Saxons, Viking and Normans. It was central to the history of England during the Wars of the Roses and later the Civil War.”

Briefly the capital of England, York’s rich heritage is reflected in its many tourist attractions, which include the iconic York Minster, a 13th century Gothic cathedral that dominates the medieval walled city, and the Shambles, considered the most picturesque street in Britain.

Additional top attractions include The National Railway Museum, The Castle Museum, The Jorvik Centre, York’s Chocolate Story, and The Yorkshire Museum. York is famous for its exquisite architecture, cobbled streets, museums, cafe culture, designer and craft shops, theatres, live music, nightlife and festivals. Explore the Visit York website to discover more activities or book a meal at one of York’s historic pubs or fashionable waterside restaurants.

“York and Leeds are now both major university centres. English language teaching and education play a central role in York’s appeal as one of the UK’s key destinations. The schools, colleges and universities of York bring thousands of students who in turn, bring millions of pounds to spend,” says Mr Hjort.

In looking at the UK’s ELT sector, the value of export revenue was £1.2 billion for 2014. The total economic impact of the sector – including student spending on tuition, accommodations, and other living expenses as well as additional spending by ELT centres and their employees and suppliers – is estimated at £2.4 billion, £90 million in the Yorkshire region alone.

Beautiful and historic, York is a favourite tourist destination and ideal for English language students. There are many sights, shops and cafes within walking distance or a quick bike ride away since York is one of the UK’s premier cycling cities.

Leeds and York are both surrounded by beautiful, easy-to-reach countryside such as the Yorkshire Dales, the Peak District, or the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, an open air gallery featuring works by Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth.

You can also see Castle Howard, one of England’s grandest remaining baroque mansions located just 15 miles from York. Alternatively, you may enjoy a visit to Bronte Country at Haworth, Fountains Abbey, or to stately homes such as Temple Newsam and Harewood House, a magnificent 18th century property with gardens landscaped by Capability Brown. And not far from York is the northeast coast and the charming, cobblestone Whitby, the town that inspired Bram Stoker to write Dracula.

We look forward to seeing you soon in Leeds and York for this year’s conference!


Jacqueline Kassteen:
Jacqueline has over 15 years’ marketing experience in international education, student travel, publishing, lead generation, retail, and financial services. She’s lived in eight countries and is based in London. After 4+ years of building ICEF Monitor to an audience of 40,000 global subscribers, Jacqueline is now the Owner and Managing Director of Transformative Marketing Solutions. She works with clients as a consultant and project manager, offering marketing expertise in the international education industry. She specialises in recruitment and retention strategies through the use of online and offline marketing techniques, agencies, social media, alumni, product and partnership development, and research. She runs training sessions and masterclasses, and is also a regular presenter, plenary speaker, and panelist at various global events held throughout the year.

About this blog

Members of IALC share their insights on the language travel industry. Contributors are owners, directors, managers, teachers or administrative staff of IALC-accredited language schools worldwide.

IALC Workshop

IALC 2017 Workshop in Boston Massachusetts, USA - 23-26 March 2017

IALC 2017 Boston
Dates: 23-26 March 2017
Location: Boston, USA
Educators: IALC-accredited language schools worldwide
Hosted by: ELC Boston

ELC Boston hosts the IALC 2017 workshop

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