Jade Digby (26) attained a grade four in GCSE Maths and an Access to Health Studies qualification at Loughborough College, after juggling online studying with the demands of looking after two-year-old daughter, Devon.
It means she can now head off to the University of Leicester to study an undergraduate masters degree in Adult Nursing with Mental Health and Leadership.
Jade said: “I’ve worked really hard over the year to get this so I’m over the moon.
“Being able to work in mental health is really close to my heart because I’ve experienced quite a few issues in my family over the years, so I really want to become a nurse to help people get better.
“I’ve always worked in some form of the care industry, but this is my ambition and a chance to make a big difference to other people and their families.”
After nine years working as a beauty therapist, Jade decided she wanted to change the trajectory of her life and discovered the University of Leicester course – but she needed to add GCSE Maths to her CV to get a place on it.
It was a massive challenge for her as she had such a bad experience of maths when at school.
Jade added: “When I was at school, I hated maths.
“I had so many different teachers and didn’t enjoy it so I never really bothered.
“But the support and quality of teaching at Loughborough has been brilliant.
“My maths teacher, Sarah Rudge, is the best teacher I’ve ever had.
“She had such a great personality and helped us learn in our own ways.
“She went out of her way to support us which meant she would be marking work and giving me feedback late at night, when I could actually focus on work when my daughter was in bed. She was just amazing.”
Jo Maher, principal and CEO at Loughborough College, said: “What an inspirational student Jade has been.
“She has worked so hard to achieve the results she needed to embark on a whole new career path.
“Further education truly gives people the opportunity to unlock their potential and achieve their ambitions.
“Jade also shows that, with the right support and an incredible attitude, it is never too late to pursue your dreams.
“We are delighted for her and wish her every success in this new chapter of her life.”
Go to www.loucoll.ac.uk/courses/gcses for more information about GCSEs and courses at Loughborough College.