The Principal and Chief Executive of North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College (NWSLC) has been awarded a Fellowship of the Chartered Institution for Further Education (CIFE) in recognition of her service to the sector. Marion Plant, OBE FCGI, who has led NWSLC for 19 years, attended a ceremony at the Apothecaries Hall in the City of London on Thursday 30 November 2023.


Marion began her career as a midwife and health visitor and has held senior management positions within the further education sector for 23 years, working tirelessly to support activities that promote and influence the raising of standards in the FE sector. Under her leadership, NWSLC has been consistently assessed as ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted and has successfully secured multiple regional and national awards for excellence.


Marion is Chair of WorldSkills UK and has actively supported the development of the WorldSkills Centre of Excellence partnership. NWSLC consistently leads national medal league tables in entry-level foundation skills competitions which the college itself conceived and developed. Last month, students gained 12 medals in total at the WorldSkills UK national finals.


Marion led the development of the MIRA Technology Institute that delivers highly acclaimed training for the automotive sector including for prestigious brands such as Jaguar Land Rover and Bentley. She served a three-year term as a non-executive director at the Department for Education and is a trustee of the National Society Council of the Church of England. Marion is proud of her role in developing college leaders, particularly women, supporting them to become principals. She is a member of the Coventry and Warwickshire Skills Advisory Panel and the Leicester and Leicestershire Local Enterprise Partnership’s Programme Board, and a member of the Association of College’s Portfolio Group for Climate Change.


NWSLC was formally admitted to the CIFE, the only organisation in the UK with royal assent to provide chartered status to FE providers, in December 2022. The college was recognised for the high quality of its further and higher education skills provision, achieved through multiple partnerships with stakeholders including the Leicester and Leicestershire LEP, Colleges West Midlands, the West Midlands Combined Authority and WorldSkills UK. Its specialisms include engineering, digital, logistics and supply chain, health and life sciences and creative arts.


NWSLC has brought together a partnership of logistics and supply chain organisations to launch the Centre for Logistics Education and Research (CLEAR) at Magna Park in Lutterworth. The college operates a Digital Skills Academy in partnership with Coventry University to create a supply of skilled individuals to this growing sector.


In addition, the college is involved with the regeneration of Nuneaton as part of the government’s Towns Fund initiative and plans to move some of its core provision to the town centre with an additional campus building due for completion in 2024.



Marion said, “I am delighted to accept a Fellowship from the Chartered Institution and I am grateful to the Institution for the honour. Throughout my career, I have been relentlessly focused on improving standards in further education and I am proud of the progress that NWSLC has achieved.


“We have a long history of engagement with our local community, serving the skills requirements of employers and working with our partners to develop excellent further and higher education across our region.”