lynzey chapman

Mother of four Lynzey Chapman, 39 from Briar Hill accessed the Advanced Learner Loan while studying the Access to Health Professions course at Northampton College.

Lynzey said: “For me the Advanced Learner Loan was essential as I wouldn’t have been able to begin my healthcare training and go on to study to become a midwife, which is what I am doing now at The University of Northampton. I found out about the loan through the College when I applied for the Access course and used it to pay for the college course itself, study materials, stationery and even childcare costs. I would have struggled to pay for these things without that financial help.

“I am now in my second year at university and I use the skills I learnt at college on a daily basis, like medical maths, social science, human biology and important study skills. I used to work as an office manager which I enjoyed but I had always wanted to be a midwife and kept putting off the training due to family commitments. After my fourth child was born I took the leap to retrain and I haven’t looked back. Without the Advanced Learner Loan that wouldn’t have been able to happen. I can’t wait to begin my midwifery career when all my training is complete.”

connor bingConnor Bing is hoping to represent the UK at the 2017 World Skills competition in Abu Dhabi, having been selected as part of the provisional squad.

Electrical engineering graduate Connor Bing, works as a mechatronics engineer for Brackmills-based automation company Festo, and will be using his expertise in circuit design, robotics and automated machinery to impress the judges at the UK Skills showcase at the NEC in Birmingham later this year.

He will be competing with companies such as Toyota for a place on the team of two due to jet out for the worldwide competition in two years' time.

He said: "The grounding I received at Northampton College was brilliant, the technology and facilities at their Booth Lane campus are outstanding, the staff are friendly and it's a superb learning environment which can set you up for future employment."
mitchell bilbe2 electrical installation resizedHaving worked on jobs with his dad for many years, Mitchell Bilbe is looking to follow in the family footsteps by learning a new trade at Northampton College.

The 18-year-old came to the College well-versed in aspects of carpentry, brickwork and carpet fitting and decided to add another string to his bow by enrolling on an electrical installation course. He is now hoping to secure an Apprenticeship and carve out a career of his own, potentially leading to having his own business in years to come.

He said: "I wanted to learn something new and broaden my skillset. It's been a really good experience and a lot of what I've learnt I can put into practice in other disciplines and use it to overcome problems on site. There's a great team ethic at the College and everyone helps each other. I'm looking forward to getting an Apprenticeship and following in my dad's footsteps."

melissa mehrtens millineryAspiring hat maker Melissa Mehrtens won the chance to work for a designer who supplies headwear to the Duchess of Cambridge having studied on an HE course at Northampton College.

The millinery student was named the overall winner of an international competition organised by the Worshipful Company of Feltmakers of London.

The 17-year-old, who cites Alexander McQueen as her design hero, scooped the £1,200 first prize and was given a work experience placement with Rachel Trevor Morgan, the Mayfair-based milliner to the Duchess of Cambridge.

She said: "The chance to design and make hats was one of the main reasons I came to Northampton College as I really wanted to learn new skills. I absolutely love it and to win the competition was amazing."

The College’s fashion department offers state-of-the-art equipment and facilities, giving students all the tools they need to embrace their creativity and bring their ideas to life.

The facilities include embroidery machines, lock stitch machines, a professional millinery steamer, a flat steam press and fusing press and a wide range of wooden brim and crown blocks.

For more information about the HE courses on offer at Northampton College visit http://www.northamptoncollege.ac.uk/courses.html

lauren porter humanities small

Lauren Porter fought a lifelong battle with dyslexia and didn’t know what an adjective was until she came to Northampton College. The 26-year-old is now a keen writer of poetry and has earned a place to study Ancient History at Edinburgh University.

Lauren’s inspirational journey has seen her tackle creative writing, English language, English literature and history as part of her Access to HE course in Humanities.

She said: “The teachers have been incredibly supportive and I’m amazed at the progress I’ve made, which has helped give me a real opportunity to get on in life. It has been hard work but it’s so rewarding. I remember crying at my computer screen as I found it so difficult and it would have been easy to walk out and give up but I got through it and earned a Distinction which was amazing.”

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