Outstanding West Suffolk College students celebrated at awards ceremony

West Suffolk College celebration of achievement awards'St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury'Picture Mark Westley ANL-150629-225046009
West Suffolk College celebration of achievement awards'St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury'Picture Mark Westley ANL-150629-225046009
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Exceptional students and their proud families filled St Edmundsbury Cathedral on Monday evening for West Suffolk College’s annual Celebration of Achievement Awards.

The event saw 55 students pick up a prizes for outstanding achievement in their subjects, for community service or through achievement despite adversity.

Aaron Williams receives his Community prize from Andrea Westlake at West Suffolk College's Celebration of Achievement Awards. Photo by Keith Mindham

Aaron Williams receives his Community prize from Andrea Westlake at West Suffolk College's Celebration of Achievement Awards. Photo by Keith Mindham

After a performance by student A capella group Amado, Principal Nikos Savvas welcomed guests to the ceremony.

“It is wonderful to see you all here in this stunning venue this evening,” he said

“We are all so proud of each and every one of you.
“You have shown understanding, commitment, grit and effort.

“Well done - this evening belongs to you.”

Shaun Cole. Picture Mark Westley

Shaun Cole. Picture Mark Westley

He then asked the students to applaud their families and teachers for their endless support.

The celebration included an inspiring keynote speech by Bury paralympian Brian Aldiss, who represented the Great Britain at the Beijing Olympics in wheelchair racing.

He now aims to compete in Rio and Tokyo.

Among the evening’s worthy prize winners was 21-year-old Aaron Williams from Bury St Edmunds.

Rachael Watson. Picture Mark Westley

Rachael Watson. Picture Mark Westley

Aaron, who was in care from the age of eight, is chairman of ‘Chat 2 Change’, a group of volunteer care leavers who help inform the council of any changes that need to be made with social care.

A avid Dr Who fan, Aaron hopes to be a television prop maker in the future.

Rachel Watson, 41, from Bury, received the Governor’s Prize for battling adversity.

Rachael had spiralled into alcohol abuse after escaping an abusive relationship but turned her life around, completing an access to higher education nursing course.

James Tilyard.  Picture Mark Westley

James Tilyard. Picture Mark Westley

In September she is going to Anglia Ruskin University to study Mental Health nursing.

“I want to help people who have mental health problems in the future, especially women”, she said.

Shaun Cole, a former soldier who was left wheelchair bound after contracting a blood infection 12 years ago, received the Penelope Hewes Award for Achievement. He is off to university in Ipswich in September to further his art studies.

He said: “I cannot wait for it.
“I’m 50 in September, I thought the kids are grown up so I may as well follow my passion.”

An exhibition of Shaun’s work will be on display at the Maxwell Charnley Gallery in Haughley from Wednesday.

Budding entrepreneur Olivia Cundell, 18, from Bury, won the MENTA Enterprise Award.

Olivia Cundell. Picture Mark Westley

Olivia Cundell. Picture Mark Westley

“I have been running a business since I was 14,” she said, “I started out with £30 I borrowed from my mum.

“I started buying keyrings and selling them on eBay, then with the money I bought a T-Shirt printer.”

Asked what she wanted to do with her career, Olivia said: “I want to be a millionaire. I will be a millionaire.”

James Tilyard, 18, from Woolpit, won the Certificate of Excellence for his outstanding work creating and editing video. He is off to London’s Ravensbourne University in September to study digital filmmaking.

James said he eventually wanted to get into the movies.

“It has always been my hobby and passion.

“I am so glad I went to West Suffolk College and would recommend it to anyone.”

Rowella Langley received The Mildenhall Learning Centre Prize for her work on her functional English Skills course.

Formally a teacher in the Philippines, Rowella now plans to take a GCSE in English.
“Then after that? We will see,” she said.

See below for a full list of award winners:

Shaun Cole

The Penelope Hewes Award for Achievement

Sponsored by Paul and Jennifer Hewes

Kyle Wing

The Whitworth Medal

Sponsored by Derek Johnson

Olivia Cundell

The MENTA Enterprise Award

Sponsored by MENTA

Adam Razzaq

The NatWest Bank Shield

Sponsored by NatWest Bank

Adam Shard

The Glasswells Cup

Sponsored by Glasswells Ltd

Nathan Doe

The O’Leary Prize

Sponsored by Sean O’Leary

Julie Hodgson

The Beauty Therapy Student of the Year

Sponsored by Aqua Sana at Center Parcs

Monica Pinto

The Hairdressing Student of the Year

Sponsored by L’Oréal

Alison Cardoso

The Infusions4chefs Exceeding Expectations Award

Sponsored by Infusions4Chefs Ltd

Tafadzwa Frank

The Sodexo Service Spirit Award

Sponsored by Sodexo Prestige

Lucy Jennings

The Russum Cup

Sponsored by E Russum & Sons Ltd

Maksi Kubicka

The East Anglian Daily Times Prize

Sponsored by East Anglian Daily Times

Katie Allen

The Access to Higher Education Trophy

Sponsored by Bury St Edmunds Women’s Aid

Brendan Dodd

The Maths Prize

Sponsored by West Suffolk College

Zayrick Villar

The English Prize

Sponsored by West Suffolk College

Samuel Bragoli-Jones

The St Edmundsbury Leisure Services Cup

Sponsored by St Edmundsbury Borough Council

Millie Watson

The Suffolk Constabulary Student Award

Sponsored by Suffolk Constabulary

Kali Wells

The Boortmalt Science Award

Sponsored by Boortmalt UK Ltd

Kerry-Louise Gwatkin

The Registered Nursing Home Award

Sponsored by The Partnership in Care Ltd

Hollie Smith

The Philips/Avent Award

Sponsored by Philips/Avent Ltd

Austin Coley

The Individual Achievement Award

Sponsored by Hon. Freeman Sheila Wormleighton

Kathryn Seymour

The Bury St Edmunds Town Council Prize

Sponsored by Bury St Edmunds Town Council

Matthew Clowes

The Delphi Trophy

Sponsored by Delphi Diesel Systems Ltd

Callum Redfern

The mi Medal

Sponsored by mi Marketing Interactive UK Ltd

James Watson

The Bury Chamber of Commerce and Industry Shield

Sponsored by Bury St Edmunds Chamber of Commerce & Industry

Jamie McKenzie

The E Rand Perpetual Challenge Cup

Sponsored by E Rand & Sons Ltd

Thomas Cross

The Construction and Built Environment Award

Sponsored by Linnet Property Management

Rowan Dewsbery

The Worshipful Company of Joiners and Ceilers Award

Sponsored by The Worshipful Company of Joiners and Ceilers of the City of London

Brendan Dodd

The Suffolk Housing Prize

Sponsored by Suffolk Housing

Stephanie Roebuck

The Milburn Award

Sponsored by Mrs Betty Milburn MBE

James Tilyard

The Certificate of Excellence

Sponsored by St Edmundsbury Cathedral

Richard Smith

The Herga Leadership Award

Sponsored by Herga Technology Ltd

Reece Peacock

The Havebury Housing Partnership Cup

Sponsored by Havebury Housing Partnership

Jack Goodwin

The TMJ Interiors Construction Apprentice of the Year

Sponsored by TMJ Interiors

Jamie Ripper

The Cocksedge Building Contractors Shield

Sponsored by Cocksedge Building Contractors Ltd

Karl Last

The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering Award

Sponsored by The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering, Suffolk Branch

Trevor Clough

The Lark Technology Derek Stuteley Cup

Sponsored by Lark Technology Ltd

Oliver Wales

The Robert Forsdike Building Services Apprentice of the Year

Sponsored by Robert Forsdike Electrical

Colin Newstead

The Cocksedge Building Contractors Award

Sponsored by Cocksedge Building Contractors Ltd

Joshua Newton

The Jeffries Shield

Sponsored by Jeffries of Bacton

Sebastian Nye

The Cecil & Larter Motor Vehicle Advanced Apprentice of the Year Level 3

Sponsored by Cecil & Larter

Sophie Buckley

The Advanced Engineering Apprentice of the Year

Sponsored by TWI Ltd

Francineide Hubbard

The West Suffolk Hospital Clinical Prize

Sponsored by West Suffolk Hospital

Neil Runswick

The Partnership in Care Award

Sponsored by The Partnership in Care Ltd

Lucy Barrett

The Gross and Co Trophy

Sponsored by Gross & Co Solicitors

Crystal Hart

The National Hairdressers’ Federation Trophy

Sponsored by National Hairdressers’ Federation

Alice Betts

The NFU Mutual Bury St Edmunds Apprentice of the Year

Sponsored by NFU Mutual Bury St Edmunds

Rebecca Upson

The Bury St Edmunds Learning Centre Prize

Sponsored by Abbeycroft Leisure

Ann Daplyn

The Haverhill Learning Centre Prize

Sponsored by Jan Cavelle

Rowella Langley

The Mildenhall Learning Centre Prize

Sponsored by Forest Heath District Council

Craig Clackett

The Sudbury Learning Centre Prize

Sponsored by A & B Glass

Jordan Harry

The Sportsperson of the Year

Sponsored by Bury Sports Medicine

Samuel Crago

The Mayor of St Edmundsbury Borough Council Equal Opportunities Award

Sponsored by The Worshipful the Mayor of St Edmundsbury

Aaron Williams

The Community Prize

Sponsored by Marks and Spencer Plc

Rachael Watson

The Governors’ Prize

The Governors of West Suffolk College