Adult education scheme nominated for award

Oxford Mail: Sobia Afridi Sobia Afridi

AN Oxford Brookes University project to educate adults in deprived areas of Oxford has been nominated for a national award.

The Brookes Bridges project runs 22 free adult education taster courses in community centres and colleges around Oxfordshire.

For this, the scheme has been nominated in the Commitment to Widening Participation category of The Guardian University Awards.

In the most run-down areas of the city and Oxfordshire these courses are encouraging adults into education.

The awards recognise universities which have “taken exceptional steps towards addressing the differences in take-up of higher education opportunities across different social groups”.

Project manager of the Brookes Bridges courses Sobia Afridi said she was delighted the project was chosen.

She said: “It sounds corny and clichéd but the course is amazing. It really is a fantastic course so it’s exciting we have been recognised with a reward.

“The beauty of it is that they are run in these communities where people want them.

“The students change as their confidence builds and they start to play an important role in their community.”

Nazar Yousif was one student to reap the rewards of the project.

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The 45-year-old East Oxford resident, who is originally from Sudan, took two Brookes Bridges courses. After his project management course at Rose Hill Community Centre in 2010 for 10 weeks, Mr Yousif decided to carry on in further education.

He was accepted to study International Labour and Trade Unions at John Ruskin College in Headington.

Mr Yousif said: “It is the flexibility which made it so good. The teaching comes to the people. One of the great things is the confidence building. It helped a lot with that.

“There were also a lot of housewives in the class. It helped a lot with their confidence building too. The course is helping me in a career and did help me make that decision to carry on education.

“When I came to Oxford in 1996, I worked in fast food, retail and manufacturing in Abingdon. The course helped me to go towards the ladder of managerial jobs.

“I am going to college and I’m really looking forward to it.”

The winners of The Guardian University Awards will be announced on February 27.

Comments (4)

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1:32pm Tue 8 Jan 13

Lord Palmerstone says...

Forgive my scepticism but doesn't Mr Yousif's history speak of motivation more than education? He is clearly a working man and he'd have made it anyway. Hopeless peole are unmotivated people and with the best will in the world Brookes cannot instill that. We must hope that the gentle reductions in state dependency happening over the next decade may play a part in heightening motivation. After all, the encouragement of welfare dependency was toxic to motivation in 1997-2010.
Forgive my scepticism but doesn't Mr Yousif's history speak of motivation more than education? He is clearly a working man and he'd have made it anyway. Hopeless peole are unmotivated people and with the best will in the world Brookes cannot instill that. We must hope that the gentle reductions in state dependency happening over the next decade may play a part in heightening motivation. After all, the encouragement of welfare dependency was toxic to motivation in 1997-2010. Lord Palmerstone

3:43pm Tue 8 Jan 13

xjohnx says...

Deprived areas of Oxford???

Deprived of state education, medical treatment, social security, proper food, transport infrastructure etc???

Deprived in relation to who or what???

Made up problems to justify wasting more tax monies!!!
Deprived areas of Oxford??? Deprived of state education, medical treatment, social security, proper food, transport infrastructure etc??? Deprived in relation to who or what??? Made up problems to justify wasting more tax monies!!! xjohnx

5:11pm Tue 8 Jan 13

bart-on simpson says...

I think this is a really good scheme - and a deserved award.

John, Jericho innit, with it's lack of car parking space, flooded Osney Island and Old Headington with its wife-swapping parties and brothels and the deprived Martin Young...
I think this is a really good scheme - and a deserved award. John, Jericho innit, with it's lack of car parking space, flooded Osney Island and Old Headington with its wife-swapping parties and brothels and the deprived Martin Young... bart-on simpson

8:37am Wed 9 Jan 13

Feelingsmatter says...

When our elderly are having their care cut, the NHS is on its knees and my son has to buy his own text-books at Abingdon & Witney college I can't help but think the government should be spending our taxes more wisely. I agree with Lord Palmerstone on this one, especially after tutoring groups of unemployed adults who were on a course funded by OCC and quite openly expressed their complete an utter disdain for the course and the concept of working for a living.
When our elderly are having their care cut, the NHS is on its knees and my son has to buy his own text-books at Abingdon & Witney college I can't help but think the government should be spending our taxes more wisely. I agree with Lord Palmerstone on this one, especially after tutoring groups of unemployed adults who were on a course funded by OCC and quite openly expressed their complete an utter disdain for the course and the concept of working for a living. Feelingsmatter

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