Kirsten Stirrat, of Enfield, has been selected as a winner in the Outstanding Academic Achievement category of the prestigious Michael Sargent Bursary Awards by OCN London. Kirsten was nominated by Christine Peck, course leader at College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL), for producing a great portfolio and gaining multiple distinctions throughout her course.

The award is presented to learners yearly with two categories, Outstanding Academic Achievement and Outstanding Commitment to Study, and is named in honour of the dedication and service of a key creator and champion of OCN, Michael Sargent.

After taking time out from work to raise three children, Kirsten enrolled at The CONEL Enfield Campus aged 45 in September 2016 to re-sit her Maths GCSE and develop her work skills ready to re-enter the job market.

Kirsten passed her GCSE and successfully applied to do the Access to Nursing course the following September. Kirsten said “The Access course has been an amazing, supportive experience and a fantastic opportunity for me. I’m a mum and a mature student and was unable to study at degree level when I finished secondary education.


"I wanted to contribute in a meaningful way to society through the job I did. Enfield College gave me the opportunity, skills and belief in myself I needed to accomplish this. Without this course, I would not have been able to go to university and follow my dream of a career in nursing. OCN Access and the exceptionally dedicated tutors of CONEL have opened a door for me to a more enriched and fulfilled life, which will also benefit my children and raise their own aspirations of what it is possible to achieve.

"My successful completion of the Access course means I have been able to accept the offer of a place on the BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing degree course at City, University of London. This was my first-choice university and is currently ranked No. 1 in London for Nursing study at degree level”.

"Kirsten will be developing her nursing skills on placement with Barts Health NHS Trust and hopes to specialise once she has completed her degree. She is currently particularly interested in Cardiology and Organ Transplantation and eventually hopes to progress on to Clinical Research Nursing.

Christine Peck, Kirsten’s tutor, said “It makes me proud to see Kirsten succeed and with moderators saying her work is perfect, I can see why. I am proud of all my class who have all progressed onto university despite difficulties in life.”

If you too would like to study Access to Nursing at CONEL click here.

OCN is a nationally recognised and vital non-profit organisation, which creates and delivers accredited courses which reflect the diversity of people’s interests and ambitions. Its aim is to ‘Transform people’s lives through learning’, enabling all people access to higher level learning no matter what their educational background.

The OCN London Michael Sargent Bursary Awards ceremony is at 3pm on Wednesday 28th November 2018, at the City Literary Institute in Covent Garden.

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