Black Mountains College
A college for the future
Black Mountains College will be a new kind of college in rural Wales. Dedicated to creativity, experimental learning and adaptive thinking, BMC will offer undergraduate and further education courses and professional development for teachers. BMC will produce undergraduates, skilled craftspeople and teachers schooled in creative methods and the latest technologies ready to confront the huge challenges facing our future generations.
More than a college
Situated within the community of Talgarth at the gateway to Mid-Wales, the college will rest on three principles:
• Students as participants – learning and volunteering within existing businesses and organisations not just the classroom.
• Living Labs – the community as a venue for trialing ideas and as the first beneficiary of new investments, jobs and new thinking.
• Balance – in harmony with the present, with nature and with the future: looking after the elderly and the young as part of the architecture of the campus, and governing all practice with the trust of future generations in mind.
What can a place teach you?
BMC rests on the idea that natural resources are not only a source of food and fuel but also the root of well-being and the wellspring of the imagination.
At BMC, the Brecon Beacons National Park is our classroom… and the landscape our greatest inspiration and teaching resource.
In higher education….
BMC will explore a truly interdisciplinary, immersive teaching experience with no faculty departments and no lectures, only seminars with a maximum of 20 students each. Students will take mandatory core courses across a range of fields: science, humanities, performing arts and manual work before choosing a real-world research project in one “major” discipline. BMC graduates will be able to communicate, critique and collaborate in order to lead society back towards a more harmonious relationship with our environment.
In further education….
BMC will train school-leavers and others in future rural skills: the traditional low-impact crafts that are, of necessity, being revived, and also new solutions for a zero-carbon economy – computer coding, intensive organic agriculture, renewable energy and transport.
In teacher training….
BMC will run immersive professional development for Powys teachers and others in creative and adaptive skills as well as, in time, developing a PGCE course that will produce new teachers ready to deliver the inter-disciplinary Donaldson curriculum in Welsh schools with its core focus on creativity and the well-being of future generations.
The Ashley Family Foundation awarded BMC a grant to support feasibility work towards an outline business case.read more
The project has been granted seed funding by Brecon Beacons National Park to conduct a feasibility study and an options appraisal looking at potential sites for the college.read more