Life Changing Learner 24+

12th June 2015 Date of publication

Life Changing Learner 24+
Winner - Philip Taylor
Nominator: Helen Edmonds, Cumbria Adult Education

Phil (pictured right) had been the main carer for his elderly mother since 1998 and had been out of employment for quite a while. As a result of circumstances Phil felt isolated and had lost confidence. Having previously done what he considered to be low skilled work only increased his insecurity and he was very stressed when he first applied for Job Seekers Allowance.

Phil was signposted to the NOCN employability/IT course hosted through Cumbria Adult Education from the Jobcentre. The 5-week course was aimed at improving IT skills to be able to apply for jobs both offline and online.

We started by creating an effective CV. Phil was worried about his lack of employment and the unskilled nature of previous roles. However, he was assured that personality and an enthusiasm were important skills not to be underestimated.

Phil uploaded his new CV to a number of job sites and within a week, he had a call from a local care home. During his interview Phil was again assured that attitude and the right disposition were some of the most important skills for caring. He was offered a job working three nights a week! A little learning had certainly gone a long way in changing Phil’s life.


(pictured above Helen Edmonds from Cumbria Adult Education receiving the award on Philip's behalf from David Hall, One Awards and Amanda Maskery, Sintons Law)

Phil is currently working on the dementia ward at the BUPA home and whilst he finds it challenging, he is enjoying this role. He will undertake an NVQ in Care as part of his employment. He cannot believe he has been successful so quickly and his confidence has greatly improved. Phil is looking forward to expanding his horizons within care sector.

Life Changing Learner 24+ 
Highly Commended - Christopher Chicken
Nominator: Shirley Jones, Sunderland College

Christopher was one of few males on his Access course and was the oldest member of the cohort. Having worked in the building trade all of his working life, Christopher had vast experience of working with and for the general public.

Christopher was an extremely committed and dedicated student. His attendance and punctuality were exemplary whilst at Sunderland College. Having successfully completed a Pre-Access course, Christopher progressed onto our Access to Higher Education Course, where he followed the Health pathway. Again, Christopher’s life experiences made him an invaluable member of his class, and he was able to make excellent contributions to discussions on all topics.

Christopher undertook this course of study whilst still working in his own business; not an easy task. However, Christopher’s determination to succeed was evident and he was fully motivated to work hard and complete his studies.

When Christopher began the course in 2012, his academic skills were poor, having not studied for many years. He had never previously written in an academic style, but he applied the advice and guidance he was given, and produced excellent work that was entirely acceptable at Level 3.

(pictured above Christopher Chicken receiving his award from Louise Morritt, David Hall at One Awards and Amanda Maskery, Sintons Law)

Christopher demonstrated his motivation and determination to study to become an Occupational Therapist, by applying to Universities that were not all close to his home. Since he moved to York he has had to be apart from his wife and children during the week.

Christopher’s determination to change his career and be able to provide for his family through obtaining a role as an Occupational Therapist is to be commended. Through the empowerment of education, Christopher has indeed totally changed his life.

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