New Year, New You, New Skills

20 December 2018 | College News

With Christmas fast approaching and a new year nearly upon us, thoughts turn to resolutions. Each year many of us set goals to achieve over the next 365 days and most will be broken, but why not choose something you can stick to?

In the spirit of ‘new year, new you’ why not learn a new skill and improve your career prospects? Returning to education as an adult can seem daunting. With bills to pay, children to look after and jobs to uphold, retraining or gaining a new qualification can seem like a pipe dream.

From Access courses and Apprenticeships, to Gold-rated Foundation and full honours degrees, the South West’s top performing College can offer something for everyone. City College Plymouth offers a range of of part-time and evening courses to fit around work and home life, with funding available so you can study without breaking the bank. It is easier than you think to return to education!

Those interested in returning to education can find out about the range of courses available at City College Plymouth Adult Education Open Evening on Wednesday 9 January, from 4.30pm to 6.30pm at Kings Road. To register your interest, visit, or call 01752 305300.

We spoke to some adult learners about their experiences of returning to education.

Chelsey Fairnington

Chelsey, 26, has suffered from health issues since a young age, which affects her ability to study and work for long hours. Having the option to study part-time at City College Plymouth has meant Chelsey has been able to return to education and take the first step towards a successful career in the catering industry.

“As an adult learner I was apprehensive about returning to education but I know there is help available whenever I need it. I have felt supported right from the application process to being here and attending classes.

“The different funding options have made doing my course possible, and I know without the Advanced Learner Loan I would not have been able to afford the course fees.

“The skills and techniques I have learnt will help me to gain part-time employment or jump start my own business. I’m really excited to get out in to the culinary world.”

Nicola Hague

Nicola, 39, runs her own beauty and face painting business and wanted to perfect her skills. The military mum found City College Plymouth offered a course in Make-up Artistry that would fit around her busy home life and meant she could continue working.

“Everyone at the College is very understanding especially of family life. I’m a mature student with a husband in the services and a 12-year-old son, so making sure my studies fit around my home life was very important to me. Having the option to study part-time has allowed me to put my family first and still have time to do something I love.

“Having access to funding has meant I don’t have to worry about money and what I do earn can go straight to supporting my family.

“This course has opened my eyes to a whole range of career opportunities and allowed me to make a lot of connections within the industry.”

Claudia Danaila

Claudia, 35, was a stay at home mum looking to start a new job. With a passion for baking, she decided to turn her hobby into a career. City College Plymouth offered her the perfect pathway to return to education.

“There is so much support available at the College. The lecturers are there to help you every step of the way and the Advanced Learner Loan has made it possible for me to return to education. Being able to access funding has meant I haven’t had to worry about money and I can just enjoy learning.

“Since becoming a mother I have dedicated my time to staying at home and looking after my child, and studying part-time has meant I can fit my studies around my home life. I didn’t know it was possible to do it all, but I can gain a qualification, be a mum and work. Studying at the College has been a real turning point.”

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