Students at Sunderland College were jumping for joy after they discovered their vocational qualification achievements would enable them to take their next steps to becoming key workers of the future and support the economic recovery.

The students studied a range of vocational qualifications in areas of key strategic importance such as business, applied science, health, construction and engineering.

Holly Watson, 18, from Sunderland discovered she’d achieved top marks in her Level 3 Extended Diploma Health and Social Care with a triple distinction star.

She is now heading to Northumbria University to study midwifery. She said: “Nothing else can prepare you for a career like a vocational qualification.

“The placements allow you to work with different professionals and adapt to different settings and situations.

“I knew that I always wanted to work in the care sector, and with midwifery you get to share such an important and special moment in people’s lives.

“The teaching staff at Sunderland College were really supportive and the heath hub facility was great for developing clinical skills.”

Lucie Forsyth from Sunderland also gained a triple distinction star in Level 3 Extended Diploma Health and Social Care.

The 18-year-old said: “These results are what I was working towards and have enabled me to secure a place at Durham University to study primary teaching.

“I love being around children and supporting them and I’ve always wanted to teach.

“I chose a vocational course as it’s more hands-on and it helps you gain work skills.

“The best thing about the course was the placements in nursery and primary school settings.”

Eighteen-year-old Level 3 Engineering student Matthew Mcginty from Sunderland achieved two distinctions and a merit.

He said: “I’m hoping to join the Royal Navy next month. The best thing about my course was making new friends and learning things I never thought I could achieve.”

Vocational qualifications such as BTECs are specialist work-related qualifications that provide students with the skills, practical understanding and knowledge to prepare students for further study, training and employment.

Judith Quinn, Interim Deputy Principal for Curriculum at Sunderland College, said: “We are delighted with the fantastic achievements of our vocational and technical students.

“We invest in state-of-the-art facilities such as our health ward, digital academy and engineering workshops to ensure our students develop career focused skills and are ready to make a contribution in the workplace.

“Many of our vocational students will be progressing to a key worker career and help to rebuild the economy.

“The impact of an innovative, careers-focused approach to our courses, and a learning experience built upon the world of work, ensures that we meet the future demands of the region’s economy and our students progress to a positive destination.”

Sunderland College offers an extensive range of vocational courses.

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