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I had already been to the College for Int 2 Health & Social Care and NC Pre-Nursing, then I decided to work full-time in a care home. I was doing personal care and assisting with eating and drinking.

However, I wanted to get my HNC so I could then go onto university and do nursing. Working in the care home you get to see a lot of stuff but it makes you want to progress and better yourself.

Studying the HNC was demanding but totally worth it. Next year I am going to the University of the West of Scotland in Ayr and I’m really looking forward to that.

I now really know my strengths and weaknesses – they get you to focus on them all year through.

The College gives you all the help you need. You don’t get treated any differently if you need that help either.

One positive was that I brought care experience to my placement, which was at Ailsa Hospital, from working before the course. I also know, for example, that I need to be more confident when I’m doing presentations in front of a crowd.

That placement was from November to June and I picked up a lot of new stuff there. I learnt how to give injections, how to take bloods, learnt about medications but I also picked up different approaches you can take to people to make them feel better.

When I saw I had a letter from the College I couldn’t believe it – I immediately thought ‘Oh no, a part of my coursework is missing!’. Personally, I don’t have a clue how I’ve won this but I’m very thankful that I have.

Once I get my degree in nursing, I’d like to start work in a hospital. Then I’ll work towards specialising in paediatrics.