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The Corporation

Posted: 18/08/16

A-Level success continues at West Nottinghamshire College

Students and staff have celebrated another great year for A-Level results at West Nottinghamshire College.

  • High-achieving students Sophia Parvaiz, Tyler Garton and Alipa Uddin
  • George Wragg was 'awestruck' with his A star, A and B grades
  • Francesca Dawes achieved an A in English literature, B in law and history and a C in maths
  • Joseph Ashmore got an A star in English literature and Bs in English language, history and his EPQ
  • Bethany Spencer achieved three A grades and a B
  • Declan Batten scooped two A star grades, a B and a C
  • Sophie Carroll smiles after achieving an A and three Bs
  • Sophie Carroll and Tyler Garton share their excellent results with principal Dame Asha Khemka
  • Students jump for joy after getting the grades they need to achieve their ambitions

Today (Thursday 18 August, 2016) is A-Level Results Day and the college has announced an overall pass rate of 99% – up 0.2% on last year’s results, and 0.9% above this year’s national pass rate (98.1%).

  • There were 793 exam entries at A2 and AS levels at the college this year (2015/16);
  • Of those, 298 were at A2 level, which were taken by 129 students;
  • The college achieved 100% pass rates in 15 out of 18 subjects at A2 level; namely English language, English literature, maths, history, geography, chemistry, media, film studies, business studies, ICT, law, sociology, psychology, photography and fine art;
  • For the second consecutive year, more than 40% of the overall passes were at the ‘high grades’ of A*-B;
  • 42 individual passes were at A* or A grade, while 78 were graded B;
  • There were 15 exam passes at the highest-possible A* grade compared with seven the previous year;
  • In five out of the 18 subjects, over half of students gained A*-B including media studies (67%), sociology (58%), chemistry (57%), business studies (56%) and law (50%);
  • 57% of students got A*-B in their Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) – up from 35% last year – while the EPQ saw a 97.1% overall pass rate;
  • 213 passes (71.5%) were graded A*-C;
  • In 15 out of 18 subjects students gained an average of a C grade or higher;
  • Meanwhile, A2 English language recorded a 100% pass rate for the tenth consecutive year.

Principal and chief executive, Dame Asha Khemka, said: “Our students have delivered another set of superb A-Level results and can feel justifiably proud of their individual achievements.

“This confirms our position as the region’s top-performing further education college for academic success to complement our reputation for vocational excellence.

“I’m delighted for our students, who have worked exceptionally hard to get the grades they need to achieve their aspirations, whether that’s progressing to higher education or into employment or an apprenticeship.

“Once again, many have secured places at the first-choice universities, and it’s a pleasure to see so many smiling faces, knowing their efforts have been worth it.

“The number of students gaining A*-B high grades, both in their main subjects and in the Extended Project Qualification, is also very encouraging. These will certainly take them to some of the leading institutions in the country.

“Credit must also go to our tutors, who coach and mentor students through two of the most important years of their lives with such passion and dedication. Congratulations to all students and staff on this much-deserved success.”

Tyler Garton, 18, from Mansfield, was delighted to achieve an A* in psychology and straight As in biology, sociology and his extended project qualification (EPQ).

He said: “I’m totally astounded by these results – they haven’t sunk in yet. I didn’t sleep at all last night, worrying about whether I’d get the grades to go to university, so this is fantastic.

“I’m now looking forward to going the University of Nottingham to study biology, which is my favourite subject. I went to summer school there last year and really enjoyed it.

“I’m so glad I came to West Notts; it’s been a fantastic stepping stone to university. Studying A-Levels has been the hardest two years of my life but it’s definitely been worth it.

“I really couldn’t be any happier today. I’m going to a party with my friends later to celebrate.”

Sophia Parvaiz, 18, from Sutton-in-Ashfield, described herself as “relieved” after achieving A* grades in English literature, biology and her EPQ, and a B in chemistry.

She said: “I’d been incredibly nervous for at least a week. I really didn’t think my grades would turn out like this so it’s a massive relief and I can enjoy the rest of the summer now.

“I’m going to study pharmacy at the University of Nottingham as this is something I’ve wanted to do for quite a while. I’m looking to work in a hospital setting but I’ll make my mind up while at university.

“West Notts has been an amazing place. It has some great social aspects and it’s developed me academically.”

Alipa Uddin, 18, from Mansfield, was “overwhelmed” at gaining A* grades in biology and psychology, B in chemistry and an A in her EPQ.

“When I opened the envelope and saw the results, I couldn’t believe it – I thought I was dreaming. But two years of hard has definitely paid off.

“Now I can look forward to studying a pharmacy degree at the University of Nottingham. I’m excited about what the future holds for me and I can’t wait to tell my family how well I’ve done.”

Eighteen-year-old George Wragg, from Mansfield Woodhouse, was “awestruck” after finding out he’d done even better than he expected – achieving an A* in business studies, A in media and B in English language.

"I didn’t think I had the capability to achieve what I have, so I’ve completely surprised myself,” he said.

“I’ve now secured a place at Newcastle University to study marketing, which I’m over the moon about. I didn’t think in a million years I’d be going there – it feels amazing.

“It’s been hard work at college, with lots of revision and many late nights, and I couldn’t have done it without my tutors – they’ve worked hard too. I’m also really grateful to my friends and family, who offered so much support in the lead-up to my exams.

“I can’t wait to go to university and embark on the next challenge in my life.”

Francesca Dawes, from Mansfield Woodhouse, managed to combine studying FOUR subjects in addition to an EPQ.

The 18-year-old’s ambition paid off when she achieved an A in English literature, B grades in law and history and a C in maths, while her EPQ was graded A*.

Francesca said: “I’m really happy with my results and my parents are just as pleased. This means I can go to the University of East Anglia to study American history.”

Joseph Ashmore, 19, from Mansfield, said it felt “amazing” to achieve an A* in English literature and B grades in English language, history and in his EPQ.

“I’ll be going to the University of Glasgow to study English literature and history,” he said.

“I found out I’d been accepted before I came to collect my results, which took a bit of pressure off me, but these grades are a real bonus.”

Bethany Spencer, 18, from Rainworth, gained straight As in sociology, law and in her EPQ, and a B in history.

She said: “I hardly slept last night but I feel quite relieved now. I’m planning on going to Warwick University to study history next.

“Career-wise, I’m hoping to go into something like ancient history but I’ll know more as I progress at university and discover my strengths.”

Declan Batten, from Alfreton, said he was “excited” at the prospect of going to university after getting an A* in psychology, B in maths and C in accounting.

The 18-year-old also gained an A* grade in his EPQ, which was about the psychological impact of sight-loss – something he knows about more than most, being severely visually-impaired himself.

He said: “I wanted to raise awareness of sight loss and the psychological problems it causes, because it often goes unnoticed. There hasn’t been much research into the subject so I conducted some research of my own. I’m delighted to achieve top marks for my work.”

Declan, who is now set to study maths at Nottingham Trent University, said: “College has been really good and I’ve had a lots of help from the visual-impairment support workers, which has enabled me focus on my studies and get the grades to reach my potential.

“I’m really excited at the prospect of getting a degree and experiencing university life.”

Sophie Carroll, from Sutton-in-Ashfield, is set to study English literature with creative writing at Lancaster University after getting an A in her EPQ and B grades in psychology, art and English literature.

It capped a fantastic few weeks for the 18-year-old, after she recently won first prize in the poetry category of the Lancaster Writing Award – earning her a £200 prize and publication in the university’s magazine.

She said: “I really want to get involved in the writing community at Lancaster, so it’s great to know I’ve achieved the grades to get onto my preferred degree course. I feel really positive about going there.”

West Nottinghamshire College offers one of the largest choices of A-Levels under one roof in Mansfield. It also offers a wide range of vocational and Higher Education qualifications including HNDs, HNCs, foundation degrees and full honours degrees.

Anybody interested in studying at the college should call 0808 100 3626.