Step up to restart your education and pathways to employment


The Step Up Programme offers support for people to re-engage with skills and education in order to access employment.


Step-Up programme - Getting you into learning or into employment.

Step up to a fresh start 

The Step Up Programme offers anyone aged 16+ a choice of pathways, designed to meet various employment and training needs. This is free to attend as all costs are met by the Department for the Economy.  If you are looking to gain skills and education to help you get into work, the Step Up Programme could be for you. Step Up opened in September 2023 across SERC’s Bangor, Downpatrick, Lisburn, Newtownards and Newcastle campuses.  All pathways are person-centred and flexible, and each student will be given personal support to help you reach your goals.   

Pathway 1: College Connect +

This pathway is designed for those aged 16-24 not in education, employment or training. The College Connect+ pathway will start the week of 8 January 2024, at the college’s Bangor and Lisburn Campuses.  

Participants will: 

  • Develop an individual learning plan
  • Receive support up to a Level 1 qualification
  • Receive mentorship
  • Receive FREE expert 1-2-1 career guidance by SERC Careers Advisors
  • Learn new skills 

To sign up for our College Connect+ courses, please register below:

Register Here
Pathway 2: College Connect 24 + Step up to Restart

Designed for anyone aged 24+ who is unemployed or economically inactive and looking to build their skills to enter employment or return to education. This pathway is designed to give you confidence and to develop skills to help you achieve your goals.

We understand how daunting it can be to come back to education and we want to help you take that first step. Our approach is student centred and we are confident that we will be able to support and inspire you to learn and achieve, regardless of the challenges you face.

The College Connect+ pathway will run for 12 weeks as follows:

CampusStart DateDaysTimes
BangorMonday 22 JanuaryMonday & Friday9.30am-2.30pm
LisburnTuesday 30 JanuaryTuesday & Friday9.30am-2.30pm
NewcastleThursday 1 FebruaryTuesday & Thursday9.30am-2.30pm
DownpatrickWednesday 17 JanuaryMonday & Wednesday9.30am-2.30pm
BallynahinchWednesday 24 JanuaryWednesday & Friday9.30am-2.30pm

Participants will:

  • Develop an individual learning plan
  • Receive mentorship
  • Receive FREE expert 1-2-1 career guidance by SERC Careers Advisors
  • Learn new skills 

To sign up for our College Connect 24+ courses, please register below:

Register Here
Pathway 3: Women Returners Access Programme (WRAP)

WRAP will be running free programmes starting in January 2024 for 12 weeks, delivered mainly in the community as follows: 

CampusStart DateTimes
Bangor 
Monday 22 January, 1 day per week9.30am - 12.30pm
Ballynahinch Wednesday 24th January, 1 day per week9.30am - 12.30pm

All programmes will have a focus on taking care of yourself and your wellbeing. The programme is a perfect opportunity for you to: 

  • Learn new skills around building mental health, resilience, protecting yourself
  • Learn about healthy eating
  • Build your confidence
  • Meet new people

All programmes delivered in the community are designed for women who are currently unemployed or economically inactive, and wishing to return to education to refresh skills, to learn new skills and to build confidence.   

To sign up for our WRAP courses, please register below:

Register Here
Pathway 4: Woman Step up to Enterprise

Are you unemployed, economically inactive or currently not in education or training? Have you always had a desire to be your own boss and run your own business, but not quite had the confidence to get started?  Well, then, make 2024 the year when you start your journey and turn your idea into reality on SERC’s Step Up to Enterprise programme. 

Courses are starting in January in Bangor, Newtownards and Lisburn and will be the opportunity you need to help you to grow in confidence whilst meeting new people and creating new networks which will help you in starting your business. 

The programme will also help participants in identifying their talents and drive to build a new business. We'll train you in the skills and innovative thinking that allow founders to create successful businesses, challenging you to take a real startup from start to finish.

This pathway will run for 12 weeks as follows:

CampusStart DateTimes
LisburnMonday 29 January1.30pm-4.45pm 
NewtownardsTuesday 30 January9.30am-12.30pm
BangorThursday 1 February9.30am-12.30pm 

To sign up for our Step Up to Enterprise courses, please register below:

Register Here

Contact Us:

Telephone: 0345 600 7555 or Email: stepup@serc.ac.uk