Zachary Rault, 20, has been nominated for the Close Finance-sponsored Overcoming Adversity award by the College of Further Education’s engineering lead John Semenowicz.
Mr Semenowicz said Zachary had joined the college from St Sampson’s High, having struggled with learning-related difficulties, a lack of confidence and anxiety-related problems.
‘He started at the college back in 2014 as a full-time student on our L1 foundation programme and achieved his Btec L1 in engineering in 2015,’ he said.
‘He continued to study his English and maths and achieved his set targets. He then progressed on to the City & Guilds full time L2 programme in engineering and achieved his full qualification in June 2016 and the next level of maths and English.
Mr Rault tried to secure employment within the industry but, unfortunately, his work placement did not work out.
‘This is where Zach could have given up on his aspirations and called it a day. But Zach was determined to succeed, overcome his demons and was prepared to take his studies further. It became apparent from discussions with him that the full-time Btec L3 in engineering wasn’t going to be the most suitable option for him and he clearly needed a more craft-based skills course.
‘We created a bespoke two-year full-time City & Guilds L3 programme specifically in welding for him. The programme did already exist, but only for part-time day release employed status apprentices.
‘He therefore integrated with the day release apprentices on Thursdays and filled the rest of his timetable up by integrating with L2 full-time students and school links classes. He has now achieved City & Guild L3 in welding and his English and maths at GCSE. He has also had a very successful work placement period, one day per week for 12 weeks at Guernsey Metals, thanks to Geoff Van Katwyk.
‘This has now given him both the industrial experience and the confidence to seek permanent employment within one of the related industries.
‘He is a self-motivated and enthusiastic student who is passionate about welding and exhibits an in-depth range of welding knowledge that is outside of the content for the qualification he is studying for.’