Learner Case Studies

Realising their full potential
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Name: Peter Myers  Age: 74Peter Myers

Background: 'I am currently enrolled on sculpture and pottery; I have previously completed the sculpture and pottery courses several times along with mosaics and raku pottery. I was encouraged to study at Southend adult community college because I always wanted to study pottery and I intend to enhance my two hobbies of stained glass work and mosaics and combine what I know with my pottery projects.  My working experience so far at the college has been stunning, I have started with a blank sheet and enjoy every moment of my learning, the teaching here is of such a high quality. I would definitely recommend studying here, the experience is just amazing and I intend to study as many courses as I can.'

Name: Wendy Scotland  Age: 65Wendy scotland

Background: 'I have recently completed an interior decorative course along with life drawings, mosaics, raku and clay hand building at the college. I have made many friends whilst studying here and also gained a deeper knowledge of material using.
My learning experience has been very helpful and I have always found the tutors to be inspirational and hardworking, studying here has really made me want to take extra courses in clay hand building and contemporary painting. I was encouraged to study here at Southend adult community college because it has the best course available that meets my hobbies and interests, I would highly recommend the college, have faith in yourself to achieve, and the courses are very enjoyable.'

Name:Gemma Cartwright  Age: 27 Gemma Cartwright

Background:'I've recently completed a Beginners Spanish course at the College. Before enrolling on the course, I attended a one day taster session to try and get a feel for the language. Whilst at school, I studied GCSE French and found it to be my least favourite subject and I felt I was just destined to struggle with learning new languages. In my current role at work, I deal with a lot of clients in Latin America, and the prospect of using my newly acquired skills on a day to day basis excites and motivates me to hit the books! “I have really enjoyed the course and although I am sometimes tired after work during the classes our teacher really motivates us to learn. It is also quite relaxing to apply my brain to different skills than that I use at work during the day – I also love learning and keeping my brain active.” This was my first and certainly not my last course at the College and I look forward to progressing onto a Spanish Grammar course this summer'

Name: Arron Godsafe  Age: 47 arron

Background: 'I'm a very good single dad and people say I am kind and easy to get on with as I am always trying to help people.'

Has SACC made a difference to your life?: 'I come to college to learn more and better myself and I have really enjoyed meeting the friends I've made. When I started college, I never imagined I would be leading a team in group work. Equality is shown within the college as my classmates and staff treat me with respect.'

Name: Penny Furby Age: 60 penny

Background: 'I'm an independent mum and grandma who works in the Learning Support team as well as being a priest - self-supporting in the Church of England. I see both roles being about helping people to grow and achieve their full potential'.

Name: Janet Mary Muller  Age: 47janet

Background: 'I'm a shy person but coming to the college has really helped me build my confidence as I'm respected as an individual here'.

Has SACC made a difference to your life?: 'Coming to the college has helped me with my reading and writing so I can read to my grandchildren. The college is accessible to all and I like working with people who accept me as I am.

Name: Christine Turner  Age: 57christine turner

Background: 'I'm a bubbly outgoing person who is blind but it does not mean that I should be socially excluded. Not only am I blind. I have fibro myalgia and lupus. Although I look well on the outside I might be struggling within, but I chose to swim instead of sinking, despite the many challenges in my life I have to face daily. I want to be treated as an individual without being labelled and being accepted for who I am and not just a statistic.'

Name: Fred Plummer  Age: 58fred

Background: 'I'm a fun and friendly person who enjoys helping others and a bit of banter'.

Has SACC made a difference to your life?: 'Before I started college I couldn't read, but whilst at college my reading has significantly improved and now I can read a lot. I like coming to college it's helped me gain confidence, allowing me to read stories to my grandchildren. The college is very welcoming and even though everyone is different, everyone deserves to be treated equally'.


Name: Billy MorganBilly Morgan


Background: 'when i started coming to the College i was homeless. I came into College and was always being treated nicely.
I know that the staff who work here really care.I have now finished an English for Every Day course, and would like to do other courses as well. As an army child, my childhood was spent moving around and living abroad in Malaysia. My Dad was finally stationed in Shoebury where i went to Hinguar School, and then to Shoebury High School. I was really bullied at school, and i found secondary school really difficult, but while i was there i met Mr Staverly, my Drama teacher, he really encouraged me and gave me my passion for acting.'


Name: Sam LeeSam Lee


Background: 'I have been a professional tattoo artist for 2 years now; my Dad was also a tattoo artist which is where I picked up my passion for the career. I used to practice drawing at home with my Dad; it was something I always wanted to do. I started working at brand ink in 2012 and since then i have done about 750 tattoos. My boss, Terry was speaking to another tattoo artist about enhancing our skills on portrait tattoos; he suggested we take up a college course. Terry found a life drawing course at Southend Adult Community College and we enrolled.


Name: Terry O'ConnorTerry O\\


Background: 'I have been a tattoo artist for 12 years now, I used to work from home but I have been working from a studio for the past 5 years. I've always had an interest in art and when I was recommended to do a life drawing class to improve my portrait tattooing skills I started looking for a class.
I brought Sam, my employee along with me as staff development; realism was something we both were quite weak in and wanted to improve on. Our tutor Susan is absolutely brilliant; she has taught me no matter how insignificant you think the detail is put it in. Shadowing is also something I have improved greatly on. I would definitely recommend taking a Life drawing class to other tattoo artists, but in a selfish was i wouldn't want to, otherwise they will be just as good as me!'


Name: Robert TaylorRobert Taylor


Background: 'I had wanted to continue Learning Spanish and Mandarin Chinese for some time. However, working as a teacher,
I had very little time to myself and I struggled to study at home. However, I decided to look online for evening and weekend classes.
I was overjoyed to see that the College did both of the courses i wanted. Coming to classes at the College is important to me because it motivates me to study regularly and often. With a weekly course you know you must set the time aside to learn the Language, there are no other distractions and the focus is on learning.
I have met some fantastic people on my course from different backgrounds. We share an interest in languages and other cultures. I am relatively new to this area so it has not been easy meeting new people but the courses have enabled me to do just that. My goal is to become fluent in Spanish and Mandarin so i can become a translator.'


Name: Sophie Isaac
Celebrating Achievement 2014-15 Learner of the Year in the Community

The aim of working in the community is to reach learners who would not normally be able to access classes at the college and there are often barriers to their learning. Sophie stood out as the winner of this award because she worked hard and broke through the personal barriers she had with learning when she was younger. She found the strength to return as an adult, determined to improve her English, so that she can get a career and provide for her children. Despite continuing personal barriers and additional barriers that have arisen from supporting her children she rose to the challenge, attended regularly and with enthusiasm. Sophie has passed her Level 2 and has now enrolled on an access course for higher education.
Nominated by Nikki Fisher 


Name: Kim Faulkner
Celebrating Achievement 2014-15 Learner of the Year Learning for Health & Wellbeing

During her time in my class Kim overcame her social fears and dyslexia to produce an exemplary portfolio of evidence and demonstrate practical skills that are just amazing. This course not only led to her gaining a qualification for work, but it has also improved her health and wellbeing through what she has gained during her time on it. Kim is now continuing her learning and has enrolled on the Sugar Modelling Cake Decorating course.
Nominated by Tracy Giles


Name: Nicola Geden
Celebrating Achievement 2014-15 Learner of the Year Learning for Life

When Nicky came to class last September she had a feeling of failure about maths which sometimes manifested itself as a real sense of fear; her skill levels were low and GCSE looked like a high mountain to climb. However, as time went on, she developed a new sense of confidence in her abilities; a new realisation that ‘doing’ maths can be a very different experience from school days; even, in fact, that maths can be enjoyable - a significant and positive change in attitude. During the year Nicky’s friendly nature helped to build up a real sense of community in the class, helping to arrange meetings outside of class time to study maths together. Sadly, just days before her first GCSE exam, Nicky suffered a close family bereavement; however she still took her exams with determination despite this and was rewarded with a good pass on results day. Nicky’s enthusiasm, compassion for others in the class and discovery of enjoyment in the subject has both inspired and motivated me in my role at the college and that is why I recommended her for the Learner of the Year Learning for Life award. 
Nominated by Helen Kelly


Name: Eileen Chadband
Celebrating Achievement 2014-15 Learner of the Year Learning for Work

Eileen is a mature learner and had not worked on a computer before starting her qualification; this just added to her fears of college, work and completing a level 3. I went out to observe Eileen and she was fantastic in practice she has a lovely caring nature with the children, but, just needed to believe in herself. She produced outstanding assignments and started to make steady progress, however, sadly during the course many personal circumstances could have easily had her running away, but I knew with enough confidence, self-belief and will power she would complete! I felt so proud of Eileen when she completed her course as a timely completer.
Nominated by Caroline Nutting


Name: Mikala Rankin
Celebrating Achievement 2014-15 Young Learner of the Year

Since Mikala started the course she has really tried her best in all subjects, with encouragement and support from the teaching staff, she has persevered with this and gained English, Maths, Customer Service and ICT qualifications at various levels. Increasingly, she has been prepared to listen to the feedback given and she has shown a developing ability and desire to work independently. She is one of the most consistent attendees on the Study Programme and her punctuality, particularly recently, suggests an enthusiasm for the programme and what it can offer her. With her increasing confidence, she has brought a welcome liveliness to the classroom. Mikala’s work experience was at the Storehouse, where she helped to prepare food and hand over food parcels to those who have need of this additional support. Mikala likes poetry and creative writing and it is hoped that her English studies will provide some underpinning knowledge related to her interest.
Nominated by Deborah Angel


Name: Carly Denny
Celebrating Achievement 2014-15 Learner of the Year Learning Disabilities

Carly is always cheerful, she arrives at college really early as she has a long journey in on public transport each morning. When she does arrive at college she is straight on the PC working. She is enthusiastic and eager to learn. She really takes responsibility for her own learning whether that be travelling to college, doing her research or getting on with her work in classes. You can’t really ask for more in a student.
Nominated by Patricia North


Name: Emma Chapman
Celebrating Achievement 2014-15 Learner of the Year Westcliff Centre

When Emma first started at the Westcliff Centre, she used minimal communication and at times displayed disruptive behaviours. However, throughout her last year, Emma’s behaviours changed significantly in that she worked hard, was very polite and had a good sense of humour! She has matured into a confident, polite young lady with lots to give.
Nominated by Sue Hudson and Katherine Salleh