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First class college teaching delivers a First class result for Tredegar mum

Susan Davies

A Tredegar mum has been awarded a First class honours degree after successfully completing her education degree course at The College Ystrad Mynach.

Susan Davies, a 41 year old divorced parent, successfully completed the part time evening course while working full time at a local school and caring for her family.

After completing a two-year Foundation degree course, Susan decided to stay on and complete the final year of the BA (Honours) Early Years Care & Education course at The College Ystrad Mynach, franchised from the University of Wales Newport.

Having previously attained Advanced Diploma and Higher Level Teaching Assistant qualifications, Susan was keen to further develop her career, and top up her qualifications. With two children to care for, Susan opted to study for her degree at the Further Education (FE) college. As well as being closer to her home and place of work, she was attracted by the close-knit community and support available.

Susan explained:

“When you have been out of the education system for so long, it can feel quite intimidating going back. Studying at The College really suited my life and fitted with my commitments, and I felt really at ease there. All of the staff are so friendly and supportive, as well as being fantastic teachers.”

Susan added: “I couldn’t have done it without the support around me, from my family as well. My children have been brilliant. I’m so grateful as I never thought I’d see myself with a degree after so long out of the system.”

Tutor Alyson Lewis is thrilled that Susan has gained a First class honours and is pleased that the first-class teaching available at FE colleges is being recognised.

Alyson said:

“I’m so pleased for Susan, she deserves a massive congratulations for all her hard work and dedication over the last three years. Many of our students work full time and juggle home and work commitments and Susan has been a real inspiration.”

Commenting on the high quality of higher education teaching available at many Further education colleges, Alyson added:

“Not only are routes to qualifications more flexible at further education colleges when compared to universities, the locality of colleges to students’ workplaces and homes can make it easier to juggle studying and other commitments. Also, the cost of attaining a degree at an FE college is considerably less than through a university.”

The College Ystrad Mynach offers a range of Higher Education courses at its site in Ystrad Mynach, including HNC/D and Foundation Degree courses in variety of areas.  Courses are franchised from the University of Wales Institute Cardiff and the University of Wales, Newport, offering well-recognised higher qualifications delivered by a local college.

Brynley Davies, Principal of The College Ystrad Mynach commented:

“Many students at The College are experienced professionals in their field looking to upskill, and improve their knowledge and personal development. We are keen to encourage more professionals to explore further education routes to higher education, and to continue to deliver first -lass teaching in FE institutions. Congratulations to Susan on her achievement. I am sure she will inspire more mature students to realise their potential.”


Posted by Marketing at 09:58

Students show support for Lesotho children

Lesotho 2 Lesotho 1

Eight students from the college Ystrad Mynach have returned from a successful trip to Lesotho, Africa, where they helped educate young third world children.

Accompanied by three lecturers from The College, the group flew out to Lesotho for two weeks.

The students, who are all studying either childcare or health and social care, encouraged disadvantaged children to learn through fun and creative play activities designed to help stimulate the development of English as a spoken language. The group also visited a range of pre-schools with the Ministry of Education which provided a valuable insight into the education system in Lesotho.

Before the trip, each student had to raise £800 individually to fund the project, which they did through organising ironing sessions, selling recipe books and drumming up local community support for their bake sales and car washes.

Alyson Lewis, Early Years lecturer at The College Ystrad Mynach and one of the lecturers on the trip, said:

“The students were able to develop their team work and problem solving skills whilst experiencing another culture.  It showed them how fortunate they are to be living in Wales where there are ample opportunities for them to learn.

“It also provided them with the opportunity to use the knowledge they have gained from their courses and to put these skills into practice in a real life situation. As a college, we hope to continue to strengthen our links with Lesotho in the future.”

The College’s link to Lesotho was first forged when its former head of care Lesley Cox visited the African country through her church in Penarth and set up a connection with the College on her return. This was the third year that a group from the College has visited Lesotho, which is completely surrounded by South Africa. Despite retiring in December 2011, Mrs Cox was also part of the trip.

One of the students who visited Lesotho was Amy Jones, aged 19, from Nelson. She said:

“It was an incredible experience. The children are so grateful and attentive as they really want to learn. It was extremely saddening to see the neglect some children face. However, we had great fun working with them and watching them learn. I feel so lucky to have been given the opportunity to work with such deserving children and it’s left a big impression on me.”


Posted by Marketing at 10:26

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