Hair student Karlene Onokah
Karlene Onokah worked as a junior in a hair salon many years ago and, when the youngest of her four children started school, she came back to college to get her professional qualifications
Thirty-seven-year-old Karlene enrolled on a Level 2 course in hairdressing and tutors tailored her timetable to enable her to fit studying around her family life and child care commitments.
Karlene said: “Coming back to college has been good for me as for 14 years while I was bringing up my children, I’d been talking baby language so it’s been very refreshing and stimulating to do something new.
“Hairdressing has changed a lot since I was a junior and I’ve learnt a lot about new products and techniques, as well as doing a qualification in African Caribbean hair as part of the course which will look great on my CV.
“I was nervous about coming back to learning and worried I was going to be too old but I just fitted in with the rest of the group and wasn’t made to feel any different to the other students.”
And in a further boost for Karlene she won an outstanding student award for her standard of work and added: “It made me feel brilliant and was such a boost to think that I’d won it- me of all people!”