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Suffolk New College celebrate class of 2024 at annual awards

News overview

Awards and Showcase Evening

From heart surgery to tree surgery – student reaches for the sky after winning top arboriculture prize at annual college awards after health scare

Another learner wins two awards – he also learnt sign language so he could communicate with a classmate at college

A teenager from Stowmarket received a top honour at the annual Suffolk New College student awards event after a health scare.

James Horswill, 18, from Stowmarket received the arboriculture student of the year accolade.

Alan Pease and James Horswill

James who studied at Suffolk Rural was given the prize for his efforts on his level 3 course which he successfully passed, despite having heart surgery last year.

In terms of his health scare, James said: “I had heart surgery in September 2023. I had an ablation and my heart had a faulty pump. It was somewhat life threatening. I’m OK now and can carry on being myself with no worries at all. I enjoy life to the fullest.”

In terms of his future James added: “I’ve now finished my course and I’m going to work for The Gadd Brothers who are former students of the college. In terms of the award, I was shocked, thankful and grateful (to win).

James Horswill receiving award

James received his prize at an occasion that took place in Ipswich that saw a total of 32 awards handed out.

The master of ceremonies was Principal and CEO Alan Pease who reflected on a ‘remarkable’ year that had seen the college win a number of awards including the EADT FE and HE Provider of the Year and an education ‘Oscar’ from the

Association of Colleges for their efforts relating to sustainability. Mr Pease said: “It’s an honour and a privilege to work for Suffolk New College and I’m proud to be Principal and CEO of this amazing organisation. It’s been an outstanding year and this event is a fantastic way to celebrate our many successes.”

Principal and CEO Alan Pease

The evening was also a chance for different departments to showcase their talents and an audience of around 200 people saw several musical numbers and performances.

Performers at Awards and showcase evening

Other award winners and their loved ones also reflected on their successes.                    

George Hall, 17, from Ipswich was over the moon twice after getting top college learner in English and painting and decorating. George even learnt some phrases in British sign language so he could communicate with a peer during lessons.

George Hall receiving award

On securing his awards George – who will be returning to the college as an apprentice with Rose Builders next year said: “The college has been a good experience. I was shocked surprised and happy to win. This will 100% help me in the future.”

In terms of learning sign language to communicate with a classmate, George added: “I thought it would be nice so I learnt a few basics – a little goes a long way.”

Sarah Pearson, 52, from Ipswich won the hairdresser of the year prize. The mum of two originally worked in catering, then the care industry and she is now moving to cutting (via hairdressing. Sarah said: “The more I think about (the award) the more proud I am – and I’m so glad I stuck at it.”

Sarah Parsons receiving award

Santiago Page-Vinnanueva, 17, from Ipswich studied on a level three sports course where he worked at Cedarwood Primary School as a volunteer for a year and a half teaching PE.

Santiago receiving award

Santiago said: “I’m half Spanish so I support Real Madrid and I’d love to be a coach for them. It would be amazing to work with people like Bellingham. Winning is a real honour and reward for my work on the course.”

Osman Adam, 18, from Ipswich won the ESOL learner of the year award. Osman said: “I love it at college – everyone is really kind. It was mindblowing to win.”

Osman Adam receiving award

And two twin brothers also won learner of the year awards in different categories. Sam and Lewis Cox secured their respective accolades in the fields of plumbing and automotive.

Food was provided by learners who are currently on courses studied via the Suffolk Centre for Culinary Arts.

Every award was sponsored by an external organisation. Sizewell C were the platinum sponsor and University of Suffolk were the gold sponsor.

Posted 17 June 2024