Alumni case study

> Sandra Bullen

> Sandra Bullen  

In 2009 Sandra Bullen, who has three children returned to education in order to achieve her ambition of becoming a teacher...

Sandra, who lives just outside of Berwick-upon-Tweed, decided to return to education at the age of 40 to study for a teaching assistant's course. Prior to this she hadn't studied since completing her Scottish Highers.

While doing her teaching assistants course Sandra gained a job within the early years team at Longridge Towers, a near-by and prestigious independent school.

Sandra enjoyed her work so much, she decided to enrol at Northumberland College for a part-time Foundation Degree in Early Years Practice at the college's Berwick centre and take her learning to a higher level.

After successfully completing her Foundation Degree, Sandra opted for the one-year top-up course offered by the college through its university partnership, where she achieved a First Class Honours Degree.

After this, Sandra went on to do a graduate teaching programme at the university, for which she was awarded outstanding.

Sandra's achievements saw her receive a promotion at work and she now manages the early years unit.

She says: "The knowledge I gained through my Foundation Degree gave me greater understanding and helped me to progress towards a leader role, rather than being a teaching assistant.

"Having three children meant studying was tricky at times, however, I don't regret a minute and I feel really fortunate to have been able to achieve all I have. My college tutors gave me excellent support throughout and I'm still in touch with them now."

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