I moved here from the Philippines without any GCSE’s and so studied ESOL in my first year to gain my GCSE qualifications. I then moved onto Public Services Level 2 and then Level 3 extended diploma gaining D* D* D.
Public Services gave me confidence in myself to speak with others and to make friends. I wanted to originally join the army but due to illness I am now seeking the police pathway as a career so this is why I chose public services. Land Navigation and police powers were the favourite topics on the course and these have helped towards the first year of degree in policing as it gave me background knowledge.
The ESOL course was a great start to college especially as I was new to this country and new to the area, all of my classmates were in the same situation. I was incredibly shy but the course helped develop my English capabilities, develop friendships and mainly helped me progress onto a full time course by gaining GCSE qualifications.
In the last year of the public services course I was able to get involved with NCS (National Citizenship Service) and I did training to become a leader. I then worked with local 16 year old students doing outdoor activities, rock climbing, surfing and charity work. This gave me a huge boost in my confidence and I enjoyed having the experience in working with the students and I was able to include this in my personal statement for volunteering in my university application.
For those students applying who might not be confident in themselves, in English or if it’s not your native tongue, ESOL would be a great course to start with and get on the ladder at college.
I’d recommend the public services course; I felt supported by the lecturers and staff who were always proactive in answering questions and prepared to help. They gave us a lot of volunteering work so by the time we had personal statements to complete we had a large amount of volunteering hours to submit which I am thankful for.