For some people, deciding what they want to do with their life is easy. That was the case for Mia Blackmore, whose dream of becoming a teaching assistant came true with a little help from Oxbridge.
Some people struggle to pin down their future career path and others know exactly what they want from a young age. And while there’s no right or wrong way to go about planning your future career, it can certainly help to have a firm grasp of where you see your life going in the short and long term.
In this Success Story, we’re profiling Mia Blackmore, a young Oxbridge graduate who recently landed her first full-time teaching assistant role after completing a Level 2 Certificate in Supporting Teaching & Learning.
Hear how Mia overcame personal challenges and followed her passion on the way to becoming a qualified TA with Oxbridge.
Why Traditional Routes into Higher Education Aren’t for Everyone
When 17-year-old Mia finished secondary school in May 2019, she was ready to turn her passion for teaching into a career shaping young minds.
And yet, school wasn’t easy for Mia, as she explains: “I had a very turbulent high school experience due to setbacks in my childhood, this had an impact on my overall mental health and school was a very anxious time. I was meant to go to college after high school, but just a few weeks before starting I felt overwhelmed by the thought of it all…
“After talking with my family and seeking professional advice, I decided that I wouldn’t be able to cope with the demand and pressure that college life brings. I thought it would just put a strain on my mental health difficulties when I was already making progress.
“I was sad thinking that my dream future didn’t look so bright anymore, but mostly, I just felt relieved that I wouldn’t have to go to college at that time.”
The Perfect Plan
It’s a brave thing to listen to your intuition and do what’s best for you. Even if that means straying from the traditional path. By recognising what would help and what wouldn’t, Mia had already taken a big step towards her goals. She just didn’t know it yet…
“I had to find a different way to get qualified and not let my problems hold me back. I needed to be more confident too, so I could reach my dream career.
“When I came across Oxbridge, I knew it was the perfect way to get to where I wanted to be whilst I worked on the things that triggered me about college life. But it was important that Oxbridge understood my needs and could fully support me.”
“Luckily, I felt reassured after speaking with a lovely course adviser and I grew confident about the support I would get. When my course folder arrived in the post, I was so excited to get started, yet still so nervous, wondering if I would really be capable of completing it.
“Looking back, I know that’s a natural feeling, and it soon passed once I got stuck into my work. I still can’t believe how far I’ve come since that day.”
The Learning Journey
The great thing about home learning is that you can fit your studying and assignments around your personal commitments. For Mia, studying around her placement hours helped her hone her skills and boost her confidence.
“My daily routine was perfect because I could complete my qualification around my placement and personal life. For example, if I wanted to spend time with friends at the weekend, I made sure I completed an assignment before doing so.
“During the week, I worked as a TA at my local primary school. Studying around my placement gave me a good structure to base my timetable and work ethic on.”
As part of her studies, Mia enjoyed the freedom of setting her own targets. She said:
“Oxbridge made the whole process of studying much more relaxing, mainly because I didn’t feel any pressure to meet deadlines. I feel like my Oxbridge experience was totally tailored to my requirements, so when I completed work, it was on my terms and felt like my own achievement.”
Believing in Herself
It’s so easy to give up when something doesn’t quite work or go to plan. But Mia was determined to find a way to reach her goals; she never let the fear of failing keep her from giving it a go.
Looking back, Mia said: “Enrolling with Oxbridge was always going to be a huge step for me. Yes, I still experienced setbacks through my course due to my mental health, it didn’t just go away.
“There were days I felt like I’d never qualify, but in those moments, I turned to my tutor, my family and friends. They gave me such amazing encouragement and support to carry on and then it just got easier.”
We hope Mia’s story has inspired you to take the next step, no matter how scary it may sound. To find out more about our teaching courses and how we support students through flexible distance learning, visit the homepage or call our experienced course advisers today on 0161 630 3000.