Sharon left school after taking GCSEs and started a family soon after. She aspired to be a nurse, but further study was not a realistic possibility for her at that time.
Sharon later considered returning to higher-level study, but found there were barriers:
“I seriously considered going to university three or four times, but it was just too difficult. It would have meant leaving my job, which I didn’t want to do, studying full-time, and living off a bursary, supplemented by night shifts. As a mother of two, I just couldn’t do it.
“When I heard about the apprenticeship, all of the stumbling blocks just disappeared. I asked my employers if I could do the higher apprenticeship and they were happy to support me. So now I do I eight hours at university per week, plus 22 hours in practice in my job.