Outstanding students honoured at college graduation event

More than 200 university-level students at West Nottinghamshire College donned their caps and gowns for their graduation day at Kelham Hall.

Students collected their certificates from Prof Nick Antonopoulos, pro vice-chancellor at the University of Derby, and Prof Philip Plowden, vice-chancellor of Birmingham City University, the college’s partner universities in the delivery of higher education programmes.

Alex England receives his Student of the Year award from Nevil Croston, chairman of the college board of governors. Photo: Tracey Whitefoot

Alex England receives his Student of the Year award from Nevil Croston, chairman of the college board of governors. Photo: Tracey Whitefoot

Tom Stevens, the college’s deputy principal, presented certificates to students who graduated with qualifications accredited by Pearson Education.

The ceremony also saw 16 students win Outstanding Student awards and two students – Alex England and Tracey Crawford – also received Student of the Year awards.

Alex, 25, from Ravenshead, was nominated by his tutor Ben Ashdown for his constant pursuit of high standards in all of his studies

He was also commended for proactively enhancing his employability prospects, and has completed his FA level one coaching course and found paid work, coaching young children on the Mini-Kicks football coaching project.

Alex said: “It was great to win the awards and to hear the other students’ stories about all the amazing things they’d worked hard to achieve.

“My college experience has been very enjoyable.

“I’m going to be completing my PGCE teaching qualification at the college next, so hopefully I’ll still be seeing familiar faces and after this I’d like to go on and achieve my masters degree.”

Tracey, from Arnold, a student on the BA (Hons) business and management course, was recognised for her determination and commitment to study, finally being able to return to learning in her mid-forties having not been able to follow the traditional route to university.

Her return to studies later in life was described as an inspiration to all mature learners.

She presented an outstanding proposal to the college’s Revive hair and beauty salon which they could take forward.

This confidence also brought her success when she won the Local Authority Challenge East Midlands Award.

The event also saw members of the college’s own staff graduate from courses held at the college.

Louise Knott, vice-principal, said: “Once again we’ve seen tremendous success from our university-level students.

“We’ve celebrated hard work, dedication, breaking boundaries and the love of learning with our students together with their families, friends and tutors and the atmosphere has been full of pride and thanks.”