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Case Study

Stephanie Palmer

Ashington, Northumberland

BSc (Hons) Criminology

Stephanie Palmer had always wanted to come to university to enhance her employability and chose to study at Sunderland as it meant she could experience life away from home. She enjoys learning about the criminal justice system and is currently volunteering for the Local Appropriate Adult Scheme.

I always wanted to study for a degree so that I could enhance my employability chances and carve out a career. I chose to study at the University of Sunderland as I had always planned to broaden my horizons and studying at a university away from home was a way of doing this.

The best aspect of the BSc (Hons) Criminology course is learning new information around the criminal justice system. I really enjoy learning anything related to crime as it has always been an area of interest for me, so getting to study dedicated modules on this and how it works has been so interesting. As well as my studies, I have also been part of the Care Leavers Team during my time at university. They have been really good in terms of the support and guidance they offer. Simply knowing that there is someone there to support you if you need it can make a big difference!

My career goals have progressed quite significantly since starting university. This is particularly due to being part of the Local Appropriate Adult Scheme, which is a scheme ran by the Criminology academic team to help support those who have been arrested in police custody. Being part of the scheme as a volunteer has increased my confidence massively and has really helped me to reflect on my self-development, whilst also increasing my communication and interpersonal skills. It is definitely valuable experience that I would have never been given had I not attended the University of Sunderland. I am thankful for the opportunity to be part of the scheme, as initially it was something I didn’t think I could achieve, so it has definitely enhanced my confidence and determination to succeed in my future goals and ambitions.

The University of Sunderland is a diverse university which welcomes individuals from all types of backgrounds. I think it’s refreshing that it gives students who might not have been able to get a degree elsewhere, many opportunities to further their ambitions. If I could give prospective students looking at coming to university any advice it would be to just go for it! You never know what opportunities are on offer until you take that leap of faith. University will change your life.

If I could sum up my experience of studying at Sunderland it would be that I have changed as a person in terms of the experience and progression that I have made. Without being offered the fantastic opportunities that Sunderland has to offer, such as being as part of the Appropriate Adult Scheme, I strongly believe I wouldn’t be where I am today. It has made me see that I am capable of much more than I give myself credit for.”

Published 29 May 2020

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