Image: Jane is on the left, standing next to tutor Natalie Purnell.
Jane went from working in an insulation company to graduating with a BA (Hons) in social studies. She shared her journey with us and explained how she went from not studying for 36 years to graduating.
Jane told us: “I worked for an insulation company with no job satisfaction and my confidence was dropping on a daily basis. I knew I wanted a challenge and a change of direction.
“I saw NWSLC advertise the Social Studies degree on Facebook and Nuneaton campus is local to me. I liked the idea of studying a degree, but I didn’t have the confidence to go straight to Warwick to study. I chose Social Studies as I wanted to find out more about what makes us who we are and why we do certain things.
“The best this about NWSLC is the support you get. It has been consistent throughout the course. The support and understanding offered gave me a vast range of knowledge and skills for the transition over to Warwick. The lecturers all understood that as widening participation students, we also had lives and families which could have an impact on our studies. I had little political knowledge when I started and feared that this would hinder my studies, but with the support of tutors, I am now confident to join in political discussions. I learnt so many new skills that I never imagined myself being capable of.
“The best thing about this degree is how it is split between Warwick University and the college. Studying at college for the first two years is great preparation for the transition to the two years at university, the college gave me a vast range of knowledge and skills that I used during the transition. It has also transformed me into a confident person.
“When I first started the course, I froze at the thought of speaking in front of others, feeling that my opinion would not be important. Whereas, I can now confidently deliver presentations to my peer group and join in discussions and debates. My family are amazed at the way I have changed. At my graduation, I walked proudly onto the stage to receive my degree.
“At the beginning, I had no idea what I would want to do after completing my degree. Now I have been offered an unconditional place to do a part-time masters MA Sociology degree starting in September 2019 and have been successful in gaining a Warwick Taught Masters Scholarship. I am hoping to work towards teaching after completing the master’s degree.
“If I were to give advice to other people considering this course, I’d say that if I can do it, anyone can. When I started, I had no idea whether I would even complete the course, I’d been out of education for 36 years, but now I’ve achieved a 2:1 certification.
“During the course, we were told time and time again to “believe in ourselves’. When I walked on the stage to get my degree, I realised I finally did believe in myself.”