IT was a testament to the hard work and resilience of the students at Hopwood Hall College as the Class of 2020 received their BTEC results.
This year’s grades marked evidence of a dedicated and committed College community who found triumph after months of unforeseen challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Many learners studying health-related courses actually insisted the current circumstances sparked an even bigger willingness to succeed in becoming a key worker.
This includes Lauren McGeary, who received an incredible three Distinctions in her Level 3 Advanced Diploma in Health and Social Care.
Lauren, 19, and many of her fellow students are now following the path to becoming one of the frontline occupations which have been the source of much inspiration since March.
In January, Lauren, from Royton, will go on to study Children’s Nursing at Edge Hill University with an aim of becoming a neonatal nurse.
Lauren said: “I would definitely recommend that people consider doing a BTEC diploma instead of A-Levels.
“The modules are very coursework-based and this allowed me to demonstrate my knowledge in a way that worked for me.
“I think it’s very important that people go on to become key workers. The NHS might not be the same now for a long time and they need staff more than ever.”
Meanwhile, classmate Emily Lockwood achieved an outstanding two Distinction*s and a Distinction.
Emily, from Middleton, is now pursuing a career focused on helping children as she goes on to study Early Years and Childhood Studies at Manchester Metropolitan University.
She said: “I’m chuffed about my results! I’m looking forward to following this career path because I’ve got sympathy and empathy for people who have suffered, and now I’ll be able to use my new skills to talk to them and help them.”
Hopwood’s diverse body of learners had reason to celebrate, including those studying Animal Care.
There was a 100 per cent pass rate for the Level 3 Advanced Technical Extended Diploma in Animal Management, allowing students to clinch places at universities up and down the country, as well as highly desirable jobs in the animal care industry.
This includes Shannon Donnelly from Oldham, who achieved a Distinction and two Merits during the two-year course in which she had daily access to more than 700 species of animals homed at the College’s Middleton Campus.
She said: “I’m really happy with my results, especially since I was initially unaware that this type of qualification can be just as good as A-Levels.
“I’m now deciding what I want to do next, but these results have already opened up so many doors for me.
“I know for a fact that if I wanted to go to university next year I can do with the grades I’ve received.”
Julia Heap, Principal and CEO of Hopwood Hall College, said: “This year our students have demonstrated that no hurdle is too big to jump if it moves them one step closer to achieving their goals.
“These BTEC results will open up incredible opportunities – whether it’s landing their dream job, moving away for university or even progressing into Higher Education at Hopwood.
“Everyone who received results deserves a huge congratulations for their exceptional effort and for overcoming such trying circumstances.”
Carole Fallon, Programme Manager for Health and Social Care, said: “It fills me with so much pride to see our students do so well on their courses and then set their sights on becoming one of the key workers of tomorrow.
“Our learners have been so inspired by this country’s brave frontline staff, so it’s no surprise that they’re now choosing routes in which they can follow in their footsteps.”
Sarah Whitehurst, Programme Manager Centre for Life Sciences, said: “Each year our learners achieve wonderful outcomes but we are especially proud this year.
“The 100% pass rate on the Level 3 Animal Management is due to the positive attitude and resilience of both the students and staff who worked together to ensure that learning was not interrupted during a very strange final term.
“I am sure the experiences of the past few months have prepared hem to be able to successfully deal with whatever challenges life presents them with and we wish them all the best for the future.”