Access celebrations 2016

Celebrating Access course students came together to mark their success and prepare for the next stage on their journey with the University of Bolton.

With 90 per cent now moving on to study for undergraduate degree courses in subjects ranging from computing to psychology and from accounting to health and social care, the 2016 Access ‘stars’ collected their certificates, thanked lecturers and celebrated with their families..


Among them is 24-year-old Jose Vasconcelos from Salford whose ambition is to swap a job in retail for a career in accountancy. Jose is already signed up for the Bolton Award, an employability programme run at the University, and is volunteering with the Students’ Union. As well as receiving his Access certificate, Jose was also presented with an Outstanding Student certificate for his contribution to the 2016 cohort’s success.

Said Jose: ‘We tease each other, but we support each other and we make sure no one is feeling left behind. If someone’s having a wobbly moment we know we can go to Facebook or WhatsApp and help will be there soon. We are a real team.

‘My experience has been excellent – the Access course is tough but it is excellent preparation for the road ahead.’

After more than 20 years travelling the world with her husband, Jeanette McGuffie, age 45, joined the Access course when her family settled in Bolton. ’With my husband in the army for more than 22 years we lived in places like Berlin and Canada but we travelled on every two years. When he retired from the army I saw an opportunity for me to grow.’

Jeanette is going on to study Psychology and plans to use her new knowledge to develop her career in working with physically and mentally handicapped children.


Said course leader, Susan Rabbitt: ‘It takes a great deal of dedication and courage to tackle and manage the workloads involved in an Access course and these students, this year, have been more than exceptional.’

Pictured are, from top: the celebrating students and their families; above, right: Jose and Jeannette – going on to study for careers in accountancy and child psychology and left: Susan with colleagues from the Access team.


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