Hard work and dedication has paid off for talented South Eastern Regional College (SERC) computing student Kathryn Young who has secured her dream job as a Graduate Software Engineer at Neueda, a global IT consultancy company, thanks to the skills and knowledge she gained at SERC.
And with school leavers across the province preparing to receive their A-level and GCSE results, Kathryn is urging others to consider their local further education college as a first option.
Having completed the first year of her university degree course and realising it wasn’t for her, Kathryn moved back home and started working in various jobs but couldn’t find anything she was passionate about. So she decided to attend SERC’s open day to see what courses were on offer and, after talking to the tutors, enrolled onto the Foundation degree in computing course.
26-year-old Kathryn had been out of education for two years when she enrolled to SERC and said that although she was nervous about returning to education she would strongly encourage others to do the same.
Kathryn said: “I had studied biomedical science at Glasgow Caledonian University, but I began to fail modules and eventually decided enough was enough. I wasn’t enjoying it and I was wasting my time. I was nervous about returning to education, but I can safely say it was the best thing I have ever done. Everyone was so friendly and the smaller class sizes suited me. My advice to others is to attend an open day and speak to the tutors and careers staff about their options.
“Thanks to SERC I now have a great job, I’m much more confident and I have found a career I really enjoy and get paid for. The best bit about the course was the work-based element which gave me an insight into the world of work.
“Without the sixteen-week placement opportunity I don’t think I would be in the position I am now as it allowed me to showcase my abilities to a potential employer who maybe wouldn’t have considered me based on a traditional paper-based application form.”
Kathryn added “The best thing about SERC was the teaching staff. Honestly, they are the best I have ever been taught by and show a genuine interest in their subjects and their students. They far surpassed any teaching I have ever experienced and I have achieved much more at SERC than I have done elsewhere.”
Course tutor Eamonn Brankin said: “Kathryn is an excellent example of how rewarding and exciting a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) can be. Foundation degrees combine academic study with on-the-job experience. This means foundation degree students graduate with a specialised set of skills that meet the specific needs of employers in a particular sector. At SERC we are committed to providing students with valuable work placements and development opportunities which allow them to improve their skills, add to their knowledge and explore their potential.”
Speaking about her experience at SERC, Kathryn explained: “I would definitely recommend the foundation degree programme. The fact that the foundation degree included a substantial work placement period was what convinced me to enrol. I would recommend studying a foundation degree to anyone thinking of returning to education.”
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