Heart of Worcestershire College student, Kelly Higgot, has been named as the BTEC High National Student of the Year 2017.
Nominated by her tutor Sarah Phillips, Kelly has studied at HoW College for over four years. Starting on a Level 2 Childcare course, Kelly has continued to progress and thrive having just completed her HND Advanced Practice in Work with Children and Families, achieving an overall distinction grade.
Talking about her progress, Sarah said: “Kelly really is one in a million. When she first started at college she was nervous and didn’t have a lot of self-confidence. Now you wouldn’t recognise her, she has thrived and is an inspiration to both myself and her peers. The classroom mantra is often “if Kelly can do it, then why can’t I?” I can’t think of anyone more deserving of this award.”
As well as studying Kelly also provides around the clock care for her two children, Brandon and Maddy, who are both severely disabled and have life-limiting conditions.
Commenting on Kelly’s achievements, Principal, Stuart Laverick said: "We feel very lucky to have an inspirational student like Kelly within the College. She is a role model to her peers and to the wider community; she is living proof of what can be achieved with hard work and dedication and we are extremely proud of her success.”
Talking about her success, Kelly added: “I was so shocked when I found out Sarah had nominated me for this award so to win feels absolutely amazing! It has been a pleasure to study at Heart of Worcestershire College, my tutors have been so supportive during my time here and I wouldn’t be where I am today without them.”
Kelly begins the next chapter of her studies at Newman University in September and hopes to top-up her HND qualification to a full-degree.
This fantastic news comes in the same week that Worcestershire records the strongest growth in higher level workforce skills for a second year running.
The ‘Inclusive Growth Monitor 2017’ report by Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF), has measured that Worcestershire has achieved the strongest growth in higher level workforce skills in all LEP areas, between 2010 to 2015. This growth is due to a larger number of people in Worcestershire having higher level occupations and a higher quality of educational attainment, which forms a key part of inclusive growth; economic growth that benefits all parts of society.
Gary Woodman, Chief Executive of Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “I am delighted that Worcestershire continues to lead the way in terms of growing higher level workforce skills and local prosperity. The latest figures show that we are continuing to drive forward skills development opportunities and, by raising the skills of our local workforce, we are continuing to ensure that our local businesses are well equipped for the future of business with access to a talented employment base.”