Annual ‘Celebration of Success’ at TCAT

Published: July 15, 2016

More than 100 top achievers were recognised at Telford College of Arts and Technology’s annual ‘Celebration of Success’ evening.

They included a Telford learner who refused to give up on her studies despite being diagnosed with cancer, and a Craven Arms student who has overcome huge physical challenges to complete four years of study.

The awards, which included ‘Learner of the Year’ certificates from each of TCAT’s schools and prizes for 12 top apprentices , were presented by interim principal Jo Lomax, and chair of governors, Rick Tyrer.

The Victor Ludorum trophy – the college’s highest individual accolade – went to Luke Anthony, a former Ludlow School student who lives in Craven Arms.

Mrs Lomax said:

Luke has shown perseverance and commitment in the face of complex physical challenges to complete his Level 3 qualification over a four-year period with humour and dedication.

He has an excellent attendance record and is held in high regard by all staff and learners across the college.

Luke’s complex physical disabilities means he communicates and completes studies using a head switch on the back of a headrest in his chair, which is connected to a tablet using sophisticated communication software.

He uses this same technology to complete his academic work independently, as well as organising his own transport to and from college and negotiating his own personal timetable.

Mrs Lomax said:

Luke is thoughtful and considerate and always considers the needs of others. He has the most wonderful sense of humour and if you are having a bad day, you can be rest assured he will cheer you up. He never complains when he is feeling unwell or is in pain.

Luke is always cheerful and optimistic and aspires to further his education, already securing a place on a Higher Education programme in September at the college.

He is an inspiration to other learners, demonstrating what can be achieved and overcome through sheer hard work, determination and a positive outlook.

The Principal’s Special Award went to former Isdall School student Laura Corbett, from Horsehay, who took a leap of faith and gave up full-time employment to start an HND course at TCAT in September 2015.

Within the first few months of the course, Laura received the devastating news that she had been diagnosed with cancer.

Mrs Lomax said:

Laura continued to put others first and maintained a positive attitude through her many hospital appointments, tests and surgery.

Unable to attend College, she was determined to continue with her studies and managed to complete her first semester with exceptional results.

Laura worked very hard to achieve her modules using the online learning environment and succeeded in attaining excellent grades. She returned to college and completed her second year to deservedly graduate this summer.

Laura is a unique and committed learner who has overcome personal challenges to continue her studies and achieve a positive outcome. Her commitment and dedication to self-improvement is remarkable.

Other special awards included the Access Learner of the Year prize for Layla Embleton, a former Ercall Wood student from Preston-upon-the-Weald Moors

The Apprentice of the Year was Rachel Williams from Hanwood, a former pupil of Thomas Adams School in Wem, and the Second Time Around Award, for people returning to education, was given to Pauline Davies from Broseley.

Pauline enrolled on a Level 2 Administration programme to learn how to use a computer to give her the skills to return to employment in a different area.

Mrs Lomax said:

As a mature learner who lost her husband five years ago, Pauline was extremely worried about learning how to use the software initially and found it difficult and frustrating. However, with perseverance she worked at home to develop her skills.

Pauline feels that she now has a new lease of life and wants to continue her education. Her experience in returning to education has increased her self-confidence and renewed her aspirations.

This year’s Citizenship award, sponsored by well-known Shropshire businessman Mike Lowe and his wife Janet for a young person who makes sacrifices as a volunteer and helps with the community, went to Business Administration apprentice Libby Ram, from Codsall.

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