Inspirational student is finalist for the Association of Colleges' Student of the Year Award

Jessica Sibthorpe
One of our Media students, Jessica Sibthorpe, is one of three finalists for the 19+ category of the Student of the Year Award run by the Association of Colleges.

Inspirational Jessica, of Farnborough, came back fighting when she was diagnosed with Leukaemia during the final year of her BSc in Media Production.

Jessica, 20, was so determined to complete her degree to the best of her ability that she continued having tutorials over the phone from her hospital bed.

Her final year media project was to create a campaign to highlight Acute Myeloid Leukaemia to younger people as this form of cancer is mostly associated with older generations.

While in hospital, Jessica gathered research, began pre-production and interviewed the medical staff treating her. She managed to produce two television and radio adverts, a five minute radio documentary, a website, a Facebook page and a launch event.

Her dedication despite such adversity earned Jessica a First Class Honours Degree.

Her tutor Anna Johnson says: “Jessica is an inspiration to all who meet her. I never heard her complain, even when she had to have tutorials over the phone whilst in her hospital bed receiving chemotherapy.

“Even when her future depended on the endless wait for test results, she spoke about how her Final Project would help others. It was never focused on her achieving certain grades. All the staff and her peers have been bowled over by her determination and all have learned something from her over the past year – never ever give up and always keep smiling.”

Jessica continues to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust while presenting her campaign and promoting her website http://jessicasibthorpe.wixsite.com/leukaemiaawareness.

Association of Colleges (AoC) President Ian Ashman said: “This year’s nominations for the Student of the Year Awards were of an exceptionally high standard and it is both humbling and heart-warming to see the impact that further education has on the lives of so many of its students.

“Jessica’s determination, spirit and motivation are truly inspiring and make her a worthy contender for this national award.”

The AoC Awards

The AoC’s Awards were launched in 2007 and aim to highlight outstanding student achievement, often in adversity and celebrate the amazing success stories so common to the sector.

There are three categories for the Student of the Year Awards with three finalists in each category.

The winners will be announced at the AoC’s Annual Conference on November 16 at the ICC in Birmingham.