Award for Nick’s fresh start

PUBLISHED: 18:00 19 May 2012 | UPDATED: 10:18 21 May 2012

Nicholas Blackshaw

Nicholas Blackshaw

Weston College

A WESTON man with a former drug problem has been recognised with an award after improving his life through adult learning.

Nick Blackshaw, aged 40, first tried adult education in 2009 when studying a part-time psychology course at Weston College. He was in rehabilitation having formerly been a substance abuser and decided that learning was the fresh start he needed.

In 2010 Nick began a health and social care course to gain the skills required to help others in his former situation and shortly after he began a counselling course - studying both courses at the same time.

Nick said: “I would have never achieved what I have without the opportunities given to me by Weston College.”

During his studies, Nick also volunteered for local project, SURF, which supports users of the drug treatment service, and is where he presents information to pharmacists and at conferences on limiting the dangers of drug use.

His dedication to learning and making a fresh start has now led to Nick being awarded with a Regional Individual Learner Award.

Further education, skills and lifelong learning minister, John Hayes, said: “I never fail to be impressed by the achievements of the winners and those shortlisted in the adult learners’ awards.

“Their stories demonstrate the power adult learning has to transform peoples’ lives and the communities they live in.”

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