Ex-addict recognised for his achievements

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A South Yorkshire student has received a national award, recognising his achievements since returning to college.

Lee Hughes, of Barnsley, received his Outstanding Individual Award, as part of Adult Learners’ Week.

The 30-year-old left school with no qualifications and battling an addiction to drugs. He is now studying for an Access to HE Diploma at Northern College, as well as reading modern history at Sheffield Hallam University.

He told The Star that participating in adult education has given him a renewed sense of what he can achieve.

Lee said: “I stumbled into adult learning completely by accident, but I’d scream it from the rooftops if I thought I could get one person like me back into education.

“Public speaking does not come naturally to me, but I was eager to pay something back, so earlier this year I stepped outside my comfort zone and was star speaker at the CoLRiC Beacon Award Presentation. I also helped to represent the cause of adult learning at a parliamentary reception at the House of Commons and have just discovered I’ve secured a second year placement with a local MP.”

Adult Learner Week celebrates the transformational power of lifelong learning.