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Access to a successful future celebrated at York College awards

THE 'amazing outcomes' achieved by adult and access students at York College was celebrated in an online award ceremony this week.

Thursday evening saw several of the 2020/21 graduates presented with awards recognising dedication and commitment to their studies, despite the challenges of the COVID pandemic.

Lee Probert opening the awards ceremony

Lee Probert, Chief Executive and Principal at York College, said: “We are so proud of our adult and access students’ achievements.

"We’re proud of them all the time, of course, but in this most testing of years they’ve juggled a plethora of conflicting commitments and priorities to achieve such amazing outcomes.

"We know that our students will ultimately turn these learning experiences into something positive for their futures and they leave us with our very best of wishes.”

Access to Humanities Tutor, Alison Willis said the support her students had shown each other had been 'phenomenal'.

"They only came to together as one in the past few months after been split into two groups - taking turns to attend the College in person or online. But they have bonded so much in that time and supported each other phenomenally.

"They've all got a place at the university of their choice, including Russel Group establishments, to study on a range of courses from politics to English literature and archaeology. Their work ethic has been outstanding."

The awards were presented by York College’s Head of Adult Curriculum, Marie Neal-Smith. Speaking shortly after the ceremony, she said: “I am very proud of all our adult students, who never cease to amaze us with their achievements, even through the most challenging 12 months, to successfully complete their courses of study.

“I’m glad we’ve been able to present awards tonight to celebrate the students’ achievements and recognise the challenges they’ve faced. I wish them well for all that they embark on in the future.”

For more information on York College’s Adult/Access courses beginning this Autumn, visit

Award Winners:

Construction Lifelong Student of the Year - Andzelika Skarupa-McShane

Engineering & Digital Lifelong Student of the Year – Andrew Skelton

Hair and Beauty Lifelong Student of the Year – Alison Mellor

Health and Social Care Lifelong Student of the Year – Dianelis Feria and Kaiyu Shi

Hospitality Lifelong Student of the Year - Miroslava Pompurova

GCSE Lifelong Student of the Year – Anna Powell

Skills for Life – Most Improved Maths Student of the Year – Jenni Clements

Skills for Life - Most Improved English Student of the Year – Joanna Jarosinska

Skills for Life - ESOL Student of the Year – Arnaldo Soares

STAR student of the Year - Rachel Taylor

Most Improved Access Student of the Year – Toni Dale

Most Determined Access Student of the Year – Louis Smith