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Lifelong Learning For All As Jackie Celebrates

After the birth of her third child Solihull mum Jackie Baker decided that she would like to go back to education.

The only thing holding her back was her lack of qualifications. The traditional time spent at school had yielded little and she left with nothing to her name.

But she preserved and managed to gain two GCSEs at Solihull College.

Her attention then switched to getting a degree, and she went on a special course for mature students run by Warwick University.

The 2+2 programme gives people without the traditional background that usually leads to a place on a degree course the chance to get into the system.

After showing some suitability to be considered, the students spend two years at a Higher Education college, and transfer to the university for another two years.

Jackie, aged 44, struggled through the course, juggling it with family commitments and health problems, and her dedication paid off and she graduated with a first class honours degree.

She even plans to return to university to start postgraduate studies in health related issues.

And she will be rewarded for her efforts on Saturday when she receives the award of Midlands Lifelong Learner of the year.

She said:

"I find it incredible to be writing such plans when five years ago I did not have a single O level.

“University seemed like an impossible dream, certainly not for people like myself. How wrong could I be.”

At almost the same moment as Jackie collects her award in Birmingham, Warwick University will be running a Lifelong Learning open day between 10am and 1pm in the Arts Centre on the main campus.

Staff and current students will be there to explain all the university's life long learning opportunities for mature students from the short courses offered by its Open Studies departments, Part Time Degrees, and 2+2 degrees.

The event is free and all are welcome.
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CWN / Education / University of Warwick / 18 May 00

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