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Case Study

Holly Robinson

BA (Hons) Community and Youth Work Studies


When young mum Holly Robinson failed to achieve her grades, she thought it was the end of the road for her dreams of studying at university. Then a call to the University of Sunderland’s Clearing helpline changed everything – she went on to graduate with a First Class Honours in Community and Youth Work Studies, and secured her dream job as a family support worker.

After completing my A Levels and not achieving the grades I had hoped for, I was in despair. I had always wanted to go to university, but I felt it was something that couldn’t happen now. However, after applying through the Clearing process, I was accepted onto the BA (Hons) Community and Youth Work Studies course at the University of Sunderland.

Sunderland is an excellent place to study, with fantastic support and high-quality teaching available. The academic team on the Community and Youth work course were able to play to everyone’s strengths and took my personal circumstances into account when planning their timetable – as a parent, I had to juggle my studying with a busy home life. The way the course was structured was very family-friendly, and the University itself helped me out financially as I received funding to help me pay for childcare when I needed it.

After three years of hard work, I was delighted to graduate with a First Class Honours degree and was even lucky enough to secure my dream job as a family support worker. My job involves working in supported accommodation for women with substance abuse problems and their families, and I thoroughly enjoy it. Although it can be challenging, I go home at the end of each day knowing that I've made a real difference to the lives of others.

I would never have imagined when I received my A Level results that I would end up getting my dream of going to university or being this happy in such an amazing career – and now here I am!”

Published 15 August 2017

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