Hard work pays off for Peterlee student Jayde

Lecturer Julie Knowles, student Jayde Kirkup and college principal Stuart Wesselby.
Lecturer Julie Knowles, student Jayde Kirkup and college principal Stuart Wesselby.
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AN inspirational student has been praised by staff at a college.

Teenager Jayde Kirkup, who suffers from cerebral palsy, has been singled out for praise after making a real impression on her lecturers at East Durham College.

She has overcome much in her life, including operations to help her walk, and still has to undertake a rigorous physiotherapy routine alongside her studies.

But the 16-year-old from Peterlee, who joined the college in September as a healthcare student, has impressed her lecturers with her work and dedication to her studies, and this week she picked up the Healthcare Student of the Month award.

Jayde, who is studying on a Btec level 3 in health and social care, took up her place at the college after completing her GSCEs at The Academy at Shotton Hall.

Her lecturer, Julie Knowles, said: “Jayde has an amazingly positive outlook which works in her favour, as does her passion and enthusiasm for her course.

“Jayde works really well in group activities.

“She is a sociable, kind, hard-working young person who does everything in her power to not let her disability be a barrier to what she wants to achieve.

“She is an inspirational person who is a pleasure to teach and very deserving of this award.”

Jayde, who is determined to forge a career as an occupational therapist or physiotherapist, says she is thrilled with her award.

She said: “After speaking with a Connexions adviser last year, I knew exactly what career I wanted to pursue.

“As well as learning loads on my course I’m also doing a work placement with the college physios which I love. I’m really proud to get this award.”

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