Students and apprentices celebrated at this year’s Graduation Ceremony at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL).
The ceremony was hosted by Principal Andy Forbes with certificates being presented by Sarah Ebanja, Chair of the CONEL Local Advisory Board.
The evening saw close to 100 learners graduate from the College who successfully completed their vocational courses and apprenticeships in 2017-18.
They were awarded for Access to Higher Education Diplomas, Higher National Certificate and Higher National Diplomas, Professional Diplomas, Teacher Education courses up to postgraduate level and Advanced Apprenticeships.
Mayor of Haringey Councillor Gina Adamou was the guest of honour at the end-of-year celebration at the College’s Tottenham Centre on 26 June.
Accountancy apprentice Arthi Mahinda, 20, said: “University wasn’t the right pathway for me. I liked the fact that on an apprenticeship you get to work and learn at the same time.
“I’ve learnt a lot during my apprenticeship and from the people I’ve been working with.
“It’s not just given me accountancy skills but the chance to gain experience in networking and public speaking across the business, which has been good for my CV and career.”
Access to Nursing student Neal Scheurer, 42, said: “The course was brilliant. I cannot praise the tutors enough for their encouragement and support, they were brilliant.
“They were very thorough and it has given me a good grounding for university, which I feel will give me an advantage over A-level students taking a degree.”
The ceremony included a presentation to Plumbing tutor Paul Oatham who has won a Silver Award in the FE Lecturer of the Year category of the Pearson Education Awards.
He was joined by his wife Jill, daughter Louise and parents William and Valerie, and some of his students who along with the College nominated him for the award.
Addressing the graduates as he accepted the award, Paul said: “This all came about because of this wonderful group of students. It is very humbling to be up here on your evening.
“Your success is our success, your down days are our worst days. Do look back but go forward – that’s the direction you are going in now.”
Bhaveet Shah, who studied an IT Extended Diploma Level, achieved a first class honours degree and is now completing for a PhD in Software Engineering at Brunel University, gave an inspiring talk at the ceremony.
He said: “All of you who are graduating today, don’t stop now. There is no limit to your potential. If you have an ambition or idea in your head, make it happen and fulfil it.”
The evening also included performances of James’ Bay’s Let It Go and Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata by Level 3 Music Production students Camarie Houston and Vasili Achillea.
CONEL offers a wide range of higher education courses, access courses, teaching qualifications, apprenticeships and vocational courses in Tottenham and Enfield.
Principal Andy Forbes said: “Graduation is a day I always look forward to as Principal.
“Seeing the joy on the faces of our students and apprentices as they graduate is a warm reminder of what education is about and the difference it can make to people’s lives.
“I’d like to congratulate all of you on your fantastic achievements.”