Student Success Stories
PGCE Diploma in Education and Training
Kasia secured an ESOL teaching post in 2014 and was encouraged to do the Diploma in Education and Training/PGCE in order to develop her teaching skills. She successfully completed her first year of the course in June 2015. Kasia says,
“The course is a blend of theory and practice. It’s helped me gain skills in managing classes. Although I was already teaching ESOL, my manager encouraged me to do the course because it really can improve your career prospects. I’ve got a BA honours degree and even an MA in Applied Linguistics, but the PGCE is far more practical.”
Kasia has maintained a full-time workload since enrolling on the Diploma in Education and Training/PGCE and says,
“It’s challenging but very meaningful. I’ve always wanted to do a job where I can make a difference to other people’s lives and this course is giving me the opportunity to do it. What I’m learning is a process, you get feedback and support. It’s not all just about theory and knowledge, you have to apply what you’ve learnt. It all translates immediately as you put it into practice and it’s definitely worth it.”
Kasia says she now approaches lesson plans with a deeper understanding and says that she’s gained confidence,
“The teachers are very approachable and extremely supportive. The lessons are designed for group work and I’ve gained so much more confidence to know that teaching really is for me.”
BA (Hons) in Integrative Counselling
"I studied at NUC from 2012 to 2015. Prior to enrolling I worked for many years as a health and social care professional, with a special interest in palliative care, but decided to take my career to the next level. I realised through my work that I loved caring for and supporting people on a one to one basis, so I decided to do the BA (Hons) in Integrative Counselling.
My career path was confirmed for me when I had the honour of being asked to support a close family friend when she was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2011. Subsequently, I began working closely with more people, both privately and through Marie Curie and hospice care. It was this that directed me towards my dissertation research. I decided to do a non-partisan study into whether spiritual beliefs help people to cope with death, dying and bereavement.
The support I received from my dissertation supervisor, Jane, was absolutely fantastic, I couldn't have asked for more. She totally believed in what I was doing and she encouraged me to move well beyond my comfort zone! She also gave me the confidence to try and get it published. As a result of this, I achieved a high-level First Class Honours Degree and my research will be published in September in the European Journal of Palliative Care.
My work in end of life care is now going from strength to strength and I have been asked to write a piece for the European Association of Palliative Care and to submit a further research proposal for a large charitable organisation, to lead another study for the improvement of palliative care in the future. I am also creating and running courses for carers and healthcare professionals in holistic end-of-life care.
This move forward for me began with my study at NUC and all the support I received from a few brilliant teachers along the way, to follow my dream."
(CELTA) Teaching English to Speakers of Others Languages
Halima never intended to do a CELTA course. She worked in pre-school childcare and went on to become a carer for 1 ½ years, but stopped following a car accident. Once she recovered she became a receptionist and decided to do a level 3 course in English Language teaching from September –December 2014. One of her tutors encouraged her to go for a higher level qualification as she had been successful in her studies and even managed to exceed her own expectations of what she could achieve.
From January – June 2015 Halima took a voluntary position that enabled her to gain experience at Shaftsbury School, where she assisted teachers with an English Class for parents, which focused on conversational skills. Some of the students in class were studying Pre-Entry Level English, while others were completing Entry Level 1 and Entry Level 2 ESOL courses. She says,
“I’ve enjoyed doing some real teaching as part of the course. On Tuesdays students teach a real ESOL class. We have to do all the lesson plans and we deal with pretty much every aspect of teaching the same classes for 8 weeks. We teach speaking, listening, reading and writing so that everything is covered.”
Halima wants to become an ESOL teacher and would like to work with women as there are lots of lots of women that don’t speak English. She says,
“It’s very rewarding, although it’s challenging too, you literally learn something new every week. The course is constructed really well and you learn a lot in a short space of time. The techniques you pick up can be taken and applied within the classroom straight away. It isn’t easy, but you do pick up the skills and you get to put them into practice. The tutors are very supportive.”
BA (Hons) Combined Studies (English and Education)
Mehak is commencing her third year of study and from the beginning of her course she has demonstrated an enthusiasm and level of engagement that has been a constant support to students and staff. She produces consistently excellent work, is a Student Representative, and regularly supports the College by advocating on behalf of other students.
Recently, Mehak participated in an employability and engagement project on the English pathway, achieving top scores for attendance, participation, student representation and other contributions to NUC activities. Above all, Mehak brings an infectious energy and passion to all classes. She says,
“Initially I was attracted to NUC because it was affordable, however, over the two years I have met motivational lectures which have pushed me to gain marks beyond my own thoughts. I have been awarded Higher Education Student of the year and have never been more privileged to be an NUC student.”