Amelia Donohue is studying for the Childcare Level 3 Diploma at City of Oxford College.
Since a young age, Amelia has had a passion for childcare. At the age of 14, her aunt told her about the world-famous Norland College, based in Bath, where graduates are guaranteed employment opportunities working with children and families. It’s a college that demands good grades and is difficult to enter, as they only accept about 100 students a year, but from that point on, Amelia’s goal was to attend Norland College.
While studying at a school in Wallingford, Amelia babysat for several families but was frustrated that she was not doing anything specifically towards her goal at school. She wanted to study a programme that was specifically for childcare, not just a health and social course.
After Amelia got her GCSEs, her older friends recommended that she attend City of Oxford College. She said that, “They came here or went to one of the other Activate Learning colleges. They said that it was a great environment, it was relaxed and you got to meet loads more new people.” After seeing that the college offered a specialist programme for Childcare Level 3, she decided to apply. “I got an interview and, although I didn’t have my English GCSE, my passion for childcare really shone through. The interviewers could see that and I think that’s why I was offered a place.”
After accepting the offer of a place at City of Oxford College, Amelia was really impressed with the course and the more responsible and mature environment around the campus. The study programme and Amelia’s tutors have also helped to keep her on track and motivated towards her goals. She said that, “It’s a different environment to school: if you don’t want to be in the class, you don’t have to be in the class, so you don’t get disruptive students. Everybody in the class wants to be there and it really sets you up for the real world or university.”
The tutors have been really supportive and have made sure we are all staying on track with everything. We are like a little family. Although college is about being more independent, the tutors are there for us if we need them. The tutors are really approachable and friendly.”
Amelia has since been accepted onto her dream study programme at Norland College. “If I’d stayed at school, I don’t think I would have got the same grades. This course really brought out my passion for childcare and has kept me motivated, along with my desire to get a place at Norland.”
Asked if Amelia would recommend Activate Learning to potential students, you was quite vociferous in her response!
“I would definitely, 100% recommend City of Oxford College, particularly if you don’t get on with school, or if you are struggling then college is great because it offers so many different opportunities at different levels. If you haven’t got all your GCSEs, then you could still go on to a lower level course, doing something that you enjoy, then move up, so you’re still doing something you enjoy. College is more hands on. At school, a lot of the study is writing and reading, but at college it’s really practical. We get to do all the activities that we plan and test them to see if they work. It’s really fun!”