Become a Student Leader

Become a Student Leader

Almost everything we do at Newcastle College University Centre is based on our principle of Student as Producer. This means we consider you a partner within our higher education community. Our Student Leaders Programme celebrates and brings together the concept of Student as Producer by encouraging you to get involved and be an active member of our higher education community. The Programme is designed to give you the opportunity to undertake research or similar activities within your discipline and across the college, allowing you to have a positive impact on the student experience and contribute to the wider student community, all whilst gaining valuable employability skills and often a generous bursary.

There is no one way to be a Student Leader: we’re committed to celebrating and representing the diversity of our student community and below you will find the different ways you can get involved and make a difference. By becoming a Student Leader you’re demonstrating your commitment to working with us to improve college life and your own future prospects – we look forward to joining you on this journey.

Become a Student Fellow

A Student Fellowship is designed to help you stand out from the crowd by strengthening your CV and complementing your degree studies with employability and work-based skills such as teamwork, leadership and presentation skills.

As a Student Fellow you’ll get the chance to work on extra-curricular projects in collaboration with college staff and you may get the opportunity to attend and present your work at external conferences. What’s more, you’ll be able to say that you’re making a real difference to your course and the college.

There will be over 70 Student Fellow opportunities this academic year. Our fellowships fall into the following categories, and you can view more information about each role here.

  • We offer fellowships over ten subject areas including performing and digital arts, sport, engineering and travel and tourism. These roles are specific to the subject you study and are new each year. Subject-based fellowships often involve working with industry representatives as well as academic staff and other students. Bursaries range from £100 – £1000.

Download Application Form

We are currently accepting applications for:

Art & Design – Fashion Retail Enterprise Social Media Marketing Fellow

Art & Design – Creative Enterprise Social Media Fellowship Brand Communications

Aviation – Research and Planning of Excursions Fellowships (2 Posts)

Education – Special Educational Needs and Disability SEND FellowshipChildcare – Sorority Fellowship Level 5 (2 Posts)

Childcare – Sorority Fellowship Level 6

Energy & Engineering – Renewables Fellowship

Energy & Engineering – Subsea Fellowship

BUSINESS – Research into Assessments Fellowship (2 Posts)

BUSINESS – Social Media Development Fellowship

Music and Performing Arts – Digital Promotions and Social Media Fellowship


Art & Design – Fashion Retail Enterprise Social Media Marketing Fellow – CLOSED

Art & Design – Creative Enterprise Social Media Fellowship (Brand Communications) – CLOSED

Aviation – Research and Planning of Excursions Fellowship – CLOSED

Aviation –  Student’s Perspective Fellowships – CLOSED

Childcare – Sorority Fellowship (Level 5) – CLOSED

Childcare – Sorority Fellowship (Level 6) – CLOSED

Counselling – Counselling Placement Programme Support Fellowship – CLOSED

Digital Arts – Photography Social Media Fellowship – CLOSED

Education – Sustainability Fellowship – CLOSED

Hair & Beauty – Placement Coordinator and Networking Manager Fellowship – CLOSED

Hair & Beauty – Social Media Manager for The Retreat Fellowship – CLOSED

Sport – Progression Mentor Fellowship – CLOSED

Sport – Research Into Assessments Fellowship – CLOSED

Sport – Sports Injury Clinic Promotor x2 Fellowships – CLOSED

Music and Performing Arts – Artist, Repertoire and Release Coordinator Fellowship – CLOSED

Music and Performing Arts – Digital Promotions and Social Media Fellowship – CLOSED

Travel and Tourism – Newcastle International Ambassador Fellowship – CLOSED

Travel & Tourism – Travel, Tourism and Events (TTE) Development Fellowship – CLOSED

If you’re interested in playing a part in shaping our higher education community, then Higher Education Community fellowships are for you. These fellows can include working with our International Office, Marketing team, or on college-wide events and social media campaigns. Bursaries of  £150 – £600 are awarded for these fellowships.

We currently have applications for:

Central Support Service – Inclusion Plan Fellowship

Central Support Service – Aspire to Aim Higher Fellowship (2 Posts)

FutureMe Coach Fellowship (Level 7) – FutureMe FellowshipOPEN UNTIL FRIDAY 7 JANUARY 2022


Research, Scholarship and Student Engagement Team – Learning Resource Fellowship x 2 – CLOSED

Marketing – Online Content Assistant Fellowship – CLOSED

Higher Education Central Team – Embedding Peer Support Fellowship – CLOSED

Download Application Form

As a Student Fellow you’ll get the chance to work on extra-curricular projects in collaboration with college staff and you may get the opportunity to attend and present your work at external conferences. What’s more, you’ll be able to say that you’re making a real difference to your course and the college.

Take a look at our available NCUC Fellowships for this Academic Year:

NCUC Fellow Level 5

NCUC Fellow Level 7


NCUC Fellows Level 7 X1 2021-2022 (CLOSED)

NCUC Fellows Level 6 X3 2021-2022 (CLOSED)

NCUC Fellows Level 5 X3 2021-2022 (CLOSED)

NCUC Fellows Level 4 X2 2021-2022 (CLOSED)

Download Application Form

Other Opportunities

Becoming a student representative gives you the opportunity to be directly involved in decisions concerning the future of Newcastle College University Centre at individual, programme and college wide levels. Student reps are elected by their classmates and, once in place, you will be offered full training and ongoing support to help you to develop your leadership and debate skills and to get the best from this role.

Student Representative Handbook 2021-2022

For further information about becoming a class rep, please speak to your course leader or contact

The 2020/2021 cycle of our Student Representative System has seen us welcome 18 Curriculum Representatives who are here to make sure your ideas and voices are heard across all levels of our Representative system. Most importantly at the most senior level, University Centre Forum, where they sit in front the Head of HE and the Director of HE for NCG!

Each week we will be introducing you to a different Curriculum Representative so you get to know who they are- keep checking back to see who is being added and who is your Curriculum Rep so you can reach out and make your Student Voice matter!

Business Curriculum Rep, Billy Tolan Brown: Meet Billy!

Education Curriculum Rep, Megan Dobson-Armstrong: Meet Megan!

The Students’ Union is the heart of the student community and offers you the chance to get involved in big issues and have your voice heard on things that really matter to you. You can become part of the Students’ Union Executive by running in annual elections and becoming an officer. Officers have responsibilities in specific areas covering a range of issues such as equal opportunities, LGBT+, higher education and many more. For further information on becoming involved with your SU, please contact our Students’ Union Coordinator Stephen Ferrell or the Students’ Union President Liam Reilly at or drop in to see them at the SU office in the Rutherford Building (Rye Hill Campus)

Featured Fellow 2021-2022

Hi, my name is Angela and I’m a mature student studying L4 Culinary Arts part-time in the University Centre. I studied Level 2 and 3 within the college so I thought it would make sense to attend Level 4 here as well. I’m finding the course very challenging, but at the same time I am loving it – especially the patisserie side of the kitchen. The tutors are great, and really encouraging for pushing you to improve and bringing your own style into the dish.  My aim is to stay on to complete Level 5/6 then look at opening a small business.

I fell into the student fellowship role when, on induction day, my lecturer explained to the group who the Transition Fellows were and he suggested I applied. I hadn’t heard of the fellows until then, but decided to apply. I’m pleased I did.  Even though I’m a people person, I’m not that confident in pushing myself out of my comfort zone, so I decided it would be a good way to build my confidence as well as being a great addition to support my CV. I completed the four-week role, and at the end I applied to stay on as an NCUC Fellow for the whole year.

Fellows are the students’ voice, and, since being in the role, I have seen how important that voice is. They strive for equality for each individual student and help to implement your ideas and suggestions – supporting those who are viable making improvements to student life. It is a nice feeling that, as a fellow, the ideas you put forward could effectively help students in the years to come.

I am really enjoying the role. NCUC staff give you all the support you need, whether it be in person or on Teams, and members of the NCUC Fellow group are really friendly. I’ve met some lovely people, and, apart from the serious work, we also have a laugh. If I’m truthful I actually look forward to meeting the fellows every Wednesday (it’s a break from my studies!) I agreed with the group to attend an academic board meeting on Teams, and, although I was nervous, everyone was so friendly and I ended up really enjoying it. It really opened my eyes as to how much planning and thought goes on behind the scenes to run the college, and how much the student is at the forefront of all the changes. It actually made me feel proud to be a student within NCUC, and I’ve since attended another Teams meeting and equally enjoyed that.

There isn’t really one individual thing I’m looking forward to, but, if I had to choose, I’d say the upcoming ethics panels. Being a fellow has definitely helped me with confidence when speaking out – making me feel valued and part of a team.

It is a privilege to be involved.

My name is Carl Huscroft-Bell, and I am doing a Foundation degree in Children and Young People. Now in my second year, the course is about the stepping stones to enhance career opportunities in schools, early years settings, youth work, and working with children with Special Educational Needs. The course provides an insight into safeguarding, the stages in the curriculum, and working with parents and families, while also providing opportunities for professional development and small work-based research projects to get you ready for dissertation level (if you decide to do a top up with a Level 6). I have found most of the modules interesting, and they have helped with my further knowledge, as well as giving me an insight in to the job role I would like to do.

The NCUC Student Fellowship was an opportunity for me to gain more professional skills, for example talking in committee meetings with management team, observe how management teams work as eventually I see this for me as a career opportunity in my chosen field. I was also aware that there might be opportunities to organise events and be part of them and possible presentation opportunities. Being an NCUC Fellow therefore provides me with transferable skills to add to my CV.

I am enjoying my time as a Fellow as it is giving me opportunities and exposure into what happens behind the scenes. With the college wanting to have student input, I feel that our voice is being heard. I enjoy meeting other students on different courses, and hearing how their own journey is going. It is nice to be a part of the NCUC community, and I have enjoyed listening to plans for future students and being part of this development. I have also enjoyed being involved in the committee meetings, whilst my involvement with the planning Expo_22 in early 2022 is something I am looking forward to.

Being an NCUC Fellow helped me with my confidence. It has also taught me how to be more professional, how to communicate with others, and how to consider other people’s views and opinions. I am sure there will be more experiences to come, and

I would encourage anyone thinking about becoming involved in the Student Fellowship Scheme to give it a go. It provides you with good skills to add to your CV (potentially making you stand out from others), while the opportunity to push yourself out of your comfort zone helps to build your confidence and resilience. You also have the potential to make changes for students that attend after you – your feedback is central to the continued development of the student experience at NCUC. Finally, some fellowships schemes come with a small amount of earnings, giving you that little bit of extra cash on the side.

I would describe being a fellow as being part of a wider community that provides a variety of opportunities to develop useful transferrable skills.

Featured Fellow 2020-2021

After twelve years of travelling and working all over the world, I settled down in Newcastle with thousands of pictures. These pictures did not reflect my experience and I wanted to know why. I joined a basic photography course with the Newcastle City Learning scheme. This led to a new hobby (obsession) and after several courses, was recommended by my tutor to apply for the BA Photography course at Newcastle College University Centre.

Not only did I have a lot to learn a lot about photography and art, I also had to learn the English learning system and how to be a student again. The Covid-19 outbreak did not make things easier, but I am highly motivated and working hard to achieve a Distinction for every module. In the last two years, I have changed my mind about what I would like to do with my degree (at least a hundred times!) I still do not know for sure, although I feel like I would like to go into the commercial product and food photography business.

I received a lot of help in my first year from other students. It is only fair to return the favour. It is a great addition to my skillset and CV and doing something is often easier than explaining it. It helps me to think about how a subject is being handled.

I was quite excited about helping others and being there to assist. Unfortunately, due to the lockdown, I have only been face-to-face with the Level 4 students  three times. The first time was our introduction and the other two were to give a demonstration in the studio. For this reason, it has so far not being the experience I was hoping for but am confident that once we are back to normal, things will pick up.

I am most looking forward to being involved in studio demonstrations, equipment advice and SWAT analysis. I think I can help a student to recognise their potentials and find confidence in their skills. Being a fellow has helped me a lot in terms of my own practice: having to explain what the process of work is makes me think more about the steps. It makes me a better photographer.

The Student Fellowship programme is a great opportunity to help others and also  grow yourself. It helps with building, not only your knowledge, but also your confidence.

Three words to describe what it is like being a fellow:

  • Motivating
  • Positivity
  • Influencing

I am in my third (and final year) at Newcastle College University Centre, currently studying Level 6 BSc (Hons) Applied Computing. This course can open a number of different doors and focuses on the following modules: systems development, website development and applications development.

Being a more mature student, I was worried about what options are available to me after I complete my course. I feel that most jobs within my degree are mainly based in other parts of the country. I want to get to know what jobs are available right here in the North East.

By getting involved in the Student fellowship role, I am hoping that it will open opportunities and contacts with employees within the industry, and also hopefully encourage other students to follow.

I am enjoying my time as a student fellow, as it has given me the confidence to help others and meet with different students and college staff. I also like to hear other the ideas and thoughts and other students.

I am most looking forward in meeting with employers from the industry and planning the events so that other students can also get the chance to also meet with them.

The fellowship role has given me the confidence to meet new students from outside my course. It has also given me the confidence to put my ideas forward.

I would say that this is a great opportunity for anyone wanting to get involved! It is a great chance to meet with people/employers that you would never think of. It also gives you great people skills as you will be working in a team and alongside college staff.
Three words to describe what it is like being a fellow:

  • Rewarding
  • Encouraging
  • Confidence-boosting

In my practice, I specialise in oil paint and am mainly inspired by the principles of Surrealism as a way of exploring my unconscious thoughts: exploring who I am as a person and the human experience and how we interact with our reality. I am particularly interested in discussions on sexuality and the turmoil that can come with it from the personal perspective of being a gay woman with an anxiety disorder. I love the female form and I use it as a vessel for thoughts and emotions concerning these topics. Existentialism is at the core of it all as I am using how I perceive my own reality to question the wider human experience.

I would like to be a professional Fine Artist, and the pandemic has made me worried for the future of my career and of Fine Arts practice in general. So, I was very interested in being involved with this fellowship to not only help myself but also others with similar concerns. Art is all around us, and it is needed in times of disaster. I do not want to see it impeded because of the fact that attending galleries and studio spaces is not possible right now and the way we go about doing so might be changed forever.

What has stood out to me so far is how important it is that we do this to help practicing artists feel more confident for the future. We can do this by looking into what we can do to work around the restrictions that we have in order to create the best art we can. This situation is so new to all of us and we need to work together to ensure our dreams and aspirations are not hindered. I am looking forward to the Open Studios Instagram exhibition that we are organising because the work that has been achieved in this lockdown is something to be greatly celebrated. I want to make every artist feel that their art is being appreciated, especially since this situation has proven to be very isolating. I am also eager to hear about the strategies people have developed when making art in this time as I am sure this information will be beneficial and I hope it will help us fellows come up with ways to help keep Fine Arts practice thriving.

The Fellowship scheme is a great way to get further involved in key areas you are interested in and to gain experience in leading and managing a project. I am working on skills that I would not usually be focussing on because I am quite a shy, reclusive person. Being a fellow has helped me step out of my comfort zone, and as a result it is helping me gain confidence in myself when handling responsibilities. I still have a lot to learn and a long way to go, but I know that at the end of it, I will feel proud that I took that step.

As part of the Fine Art BA (Hons) Fellowship, it has been such an amazing experience to be able to work with my fellows and lecturers in order to build up more experiences for everyone on the course. As a second year, it’s been more challenging, due to the current situation, however just as fun as first year. Being part of a creative degree course has really pushed me to do my best for my degree and to be as creatively inspired as I can! This inspires me for the Fellowship Programme: to be able to think outside of the box for events for our peers and year groups and to bring a sense of community that we would have if we weren’t in lockdown!

The reason I joined the Student Fellowship programme was solely to help out during this difficult time. Sadly as the college is closed, it has been a strain for the people on my course. Not having a studio, not having group crits, I want to help! I want to help organise events for my peers and the other year groups on my course in order to regain that sense of community  we have while being in lockdown! The opportunity to help my peers and come up with new ideas for the fellowship was perfect for me! Being able to work in the Fellowship makes me really positive about the future of our course and for bringing everyone together!

I’m enjoying my time in the Fellowship! Having the opportunity to create new events for peers has been so much fun and gives me hope that it will bring morale back into the Teams Calls, getting everyone involved and having more to do in lockdown. Being part of the Fellowship has also built up my communication skills up! Being more confident in speaking to my peers and other fellows has been a benefit to me. The communication between lecturers and the students has surprised me, since the New Year we have meetings to discuss further plans and what we could do for events and opportunities. I love being part of the management side of the course and the communication between me and the other fellows has been very positive! We look out for each other and organise roles evenly so we’re all involved and included. Having the opportunity to talk to my peers and other year groups has been great, we have organised a critique week which me and my fellows will be hosting, it will be a great experience for us to work with our peers and year groups! We have also planned an online exhibition for all year groups to showcase our work completed during lockdown. We cannot wait to start being able to use Instagram as a way to promote our artists and course!

If anyone is thinking about becoming a Fellow, it’s so worth it! The experiences and opportunities you get benefit you so much. The role helps with confidence, speaking openly with year groups, organisation skills, and management skills too! It’s a great experience to have as part of your course and adds more content to the work and events.

I have returned to Newcastle campus (and specifically, the Mandela building) almost twenty years, to complete my BA(Hons) in Fine Art. I want to finish my journey where I started. While I feel that’s a little cliché, it is something I need to prove to myself. I have what is known as a hidden disability and this comes with its own discrimination in society.

While being open and honest about my disability, I try and use my life experiences and personal view of the world through my Art. This something I had never considered doing prior to returning to education. I call my work Equality Art: it challenges stereotypes, as well as political and social developments that affect people with disabilities.

I try to show this in a way that is visually appealing and that will open up a conversation. I find the more that we are open and talk freely about all topics, we can break down these barriers and get an even perspective from both sides of one point of view. We don’t have to agree, but can at least agree enough to respect individual perspectives and opinions. I cannot change the world, but I will fix what I can for equality for disabled people when the opportunity presents itself.

Being a fellow has benefited me personal and academically. From a personal point of view, I have been able to elevate points of view that are sometimes voiced but never heard due to the right audiences not being present at the time of discussion. Having the communication with the university and departments that can implement change that may have not been noticed or deemed to be required is such a valuable tool to have in your arsenal.

The academic side of being a fellow has helped me grow and understand the implications and the process that needs to be explored before changes can be implemented. Learning that certain factors need to be considered and evaluated in a more formal structure with outlines of proposals and plans and their benefits vs the negatives to help both work to help us achieve change.

If I was to give advice to anyone wanting to join the fellowship programme, it is to understand that you need to be the voice of your peers. There is nothing scary or daunting about this role – we are all equal, we just have different roles. A student’s voice is just as, if not more,  important than the college or university’s voice. Newcastle College FE and HE staff strongly support this idea: if we do not engage, then we can never improve in are studies and benefit fully from our time on campus when normality resumes.

Three words I would use about being a Student Fellow are:

  • Engagement
  • Educational
  • Rewarding

Hi, I’m Hannah. I’m a PGCE student on the English specialism course, NCUC Fellow and editor of the Seven Bridges journal. I have a BA in English Literature and History and an MA in Creative Writing. I was working as a freelance writer and tutor before deciding to do the PGCE and so far, I’m loving it! It’s very practical and learning to teach during this time of change has been exciting.

I wanted to be as involved in college life as possible – especially with lockdowns and having spent so long working from home. I saw the Student Fellowship role as an opportunity to meet new people and also get an insight into what goes into the running of the college behind the scenes.

I am really enjoying my time as a fellow: I’m learning a lot, but also, I feel lucky to have this extra support network to voice concerns, hear from others and feel reassured by how much the college really cares about students. This support has been especially integral during the Covid pandemic. I am particularly looking forward being involved with Seven Bridges as editor, and hearing from other students about their research.

I would sum up what it’s like to be a NCUC fellow in three words: Interesting, inclusive and community-orientated. To anyone who is considering becoming a student fellow, I say go for it! I’ve gained so many skills and insights that are vital for my future career, and on top of that – it’s such a fun and valuable experience!

Hello, we are Josiah and Chloe and we are both students on our Level 6 courses at the college. I am (Josiah) currently studying my final year in Mechanical Engineering- this is my fifth year here at Newcastle College after starting off at Level 3 in Engineering and following all the through to Graduating this next summer. As for me (Chloe) this is my 5th year with the college studying, however I took a 4-year break to concentrate on family life but have chosen to come back and finish my degree with a L6 Engineering Management top up.

We were both drawn to the OFS Stay and Succeed Fellowship Role for the same reasons: having a prominent feature on our CVs to show our engagement, the exposure to industry and having direct contact with employers, being able to create pathways for future students into industry and to create a working and positive relationship between students and the college. So far, we are both really enjoying our involvement so far. It’s great as we have the chance to help others. This is such as big project and we feel there is genuine interest in the consideration of student ideas that are put forward and we can approach the staff members involved at any time and they respond, giving way to really clear communication between staff and students. There are some really exciting things coming up and we are looking forward to planning events, helping to improve studentship and to work with employers in industry in turn helping our peers and fellow students to connect with these employers.

By being involved in the fellowship we’ve been connected to students outside of our specific courses, we have the ability to have an impact on the course and have the chance to be involved with management. We have also had experience in the way we put ourselves forward to potential employers ahead of graduating.

If you are thinking of becoming a Fellow have an open mind as you will be required to work as part of a team in a collaboration to improve and adjust the programme itself. Also, do not be intimidated by working with higher members of staff as everyone is working towards the same goal. It is a great opportunity for progression and change and we really recommend it- if we had to pick 3 words to describe the Fellowship, rewarding, opportunities and motivating.

I am Neil Ferry and I am excited about the prospectof being the chosen editor for this year’s Fo-lio magazine.
Fo-lio is an annual publication, launched back in 2017 and celebrates the work of students in Creative Industries, here at Newcastle College.

The magazine is a full colour journal which highlights the work of students involved in Fashion, Fine Art, Textiles, Digital Design, Animation, Graphic Art, Illustration, Photography, Performing arts including Music performance & Technology, Acting, Dance, Musical Theatre and Production Arts.

So, if you’re involved in any of the above genres at Newcastle college then the Fo-lio can give you the opportunity to showcase your work. Each year the new editor is given creative freedom to take the Fo-lio forward in a slightly different direction and this year is no exception.

So firstly, I’m looking for the following…

A showcase of a body of work.

There will be several double page features in the magazine.

Students will provide a brief biography about themselves, along with a photograph, images & the story behind their body of work.

This could be a live show, the recording of an album, a L6 final exhibition, a series of documentary photographs, the design of a game. This is an amazing opportunity to show off your projects

A Day in the life of

This will give students the opportunity to document a day in your life. It could be a simple day at college, preparing for and holding a fashion show, the final rehearsal and day of a musical theatre show, an acting audition, a day at a trade exhibition, again the possibilities are endless and we’re looking for the best ideas to turn into single page features.

A Photo Essay

This is one for the photographers. Back in the day of Life Magazine, photo essay’s were incredibly popular, a way of documenting someone’s life over a period of time. We’re looking for ideas for a really interesting photographic essay, for inspiration you need look no further than iconic photojournalist W. Eugene Smith and his amazing Photo Essay, The Country Doctor.

Submissions Submissions Submissions…

In this edition of the Fo-lio we intend to showcase the work of more students than ever before.

This year we are hoping to give the 10 centre pages of the magazine over to you. We want to include 60 – 70 individual artworks. These can include Photographs, Art, Fine Art, Graphic Design & Game Design. We’d also like to see our photography departments collaborating with the performing Arts department, to include the work of our dancers, actors and musicians.

This is a fantastic opportunity to have your work in a published journal that will be seen by academics across the UK.

So, if you’re interested in having your work featured in this year’s Fo-lio, Then please contact me at

I am Laura Chiru. I am 31 years old and a mother of two children aged 4 and 7. From as young as I can remember, I have always dreamed about becoming a Primary School Teacher. When I left school, University was never a viable option for me, none of my family had been to University and student life I felt was for ‘other people’ not me. I went straight into full time work when I left school, some of them were great jobs, others not so good! When I had my first child at 24, it reinstalled my passion for teaching children. I would drop my children off at school with a lump in my throat wishing it was me welcoming a classroom of children in every morning. By 28, I had two children so totally thought that ship had sailed- mothers can’t go to Uni! I tried the next best thing and applied to be a teaching assistant in a local primary school- that job changed my life. Watching other teachers every day filled me with so much confidence to know I could also do this job and I applied to start an FdA in Children and Young People. There were a few hiccups on the way, but once they were sorted, I enrolled on the course and had the best first year. I learnt so much about children, met some amazing friends (some were also mothers and older like me- I wasn’t alone!) I finished my first year with great scores and I’m now on level 5 with the aim to complete the BA Hons top up next year and a SCITT level after that. I will be a qualified teacher by 2023.

Whilst I was working on level 4 last year showed me that university is for everyone, if you’ve got it in you to achieve, you can do it regardless of your age or caring responsibilities. COVID and lockdown hit in March this year and it wasn’t until I was home schooling two children, looking after the household duties alone whilst my husband was working full time and trying to do a full time degree that I thought, “Wow, being a mum and a student is wonderful, but so much hard work!” I felt like I wanted to support other mothers out there who may be struggling. This is when I knew I wanted to get involved in the Fellowship programme.

NCUC student fellow programme is wonderful because it allows you to pick a subject yourself that you may feel passionate about and help to change the way university works for you. My fellowship is researching the experience of mothers studying, investigating why mothers are reluctant to enrol on a degree and how NCUC can support and encourage mothers to ensure that everyone can “unlock their potential”. I am enjoying being a Fellow so much, I feel like already I’m making an impact on how University life is going to be for future mothers and the Fellowship hasn’t even yet got off the ground. I think for me the biggest stand out is the support I’ve been given by the Fellowship staff, from the first email I sent over giving some ideas and wondering if it was something I could run with, I’ve had nothing but support and encouragement. I’m looking forward to seeing a difference in how mothers are encouraged and supported to achieve their goals. If I hear from someone in a couple of years saying the reason, they entered a degree was because they heard something following on from my fellowship and it encouraged them, I would be over the moon.

Being a Fellow It has given me a bigger boost to complete my own degree to the best of my abilities to show that mams can do this! It has also encouraged me to further stand up for people who may be struggling. We all want to support people but often feel like our small input won’t make a difference. Doing this fellowship has shown me that anything we can do always makes a difference.

If you want to be involved in the programme have a good think about something that you are passionate about, don’t just keep it in your head, reach out, ask one of the fellowship team, broach the subject and I’m sure there will be someone who believes in you! If I could sum up the Fellowship in 3 words: Empowering, Interesting, Exciting.

I’m Mike, and I’m currently on my second year of my Airline and Airport Management foundation degree. I got involved in the Fellowship programme in my first year and now I’m back for my second time. Not going to lie, financial incentives might have been involved, but I thought it would look good on my CV as well. I am really enjoying my time as a Fellow again, we’ve recently pulled off an amazing TEDx event in the beginning of March, which has been the highlight of the programme so far. It was a huge event (bigger than last years) lots of guests, and everything went smoothly. Being able to stick through it, from design through to execution, has been really rewarding and I got to meet some really interesting people.

There are so many benefits to being a Fellow- it’s given me a chance to practice some of my existing skills. Things like communication, organisation, a little bit of time management. As I said before, the optics of it are great for CVs. Anyone who is considering getting involved in the Student Fellowship Scheme, go for it! It’s definitely been worthwhile for me. If you feel like doing something extra, then this is it. In 3 words being a fellow is: Engaging, Rewarding and Unique!