News, events and schools' information for families across Bath and West Wiltshire

Bath College is opening its doors to an increasing number of parents throughout the region who are accessing Higher Education and Undergraduate course as a way back into the workplace. The courses are open to all, with students ranging in age from 19-60.

Among the those benefiting from their studies at the college is Ellen Moore (pictured above), who has just gained places at multiple universities to study midwifery. “I highly recommend undertaking the Access Course, it has allowed me to realise my potential and inspired me to further my goals and aspirations.

“The course is perfect for fitting in around family life and all the lecturers are incredibly supportive. Prior to the course I was concerned how I would cope with study and children, but it is doable and prepares you for university. I have been lucky enough to achieve offers from universities I never imagined I would, truly the best decision I have made.”

Central to the appeal of the Higher Education courses at Bath College is the level of support that is available to parents, something that Bath College Principal, Laurel Penrose, recognises as being particularly important. “Higher Education is an important part of our work at Bath College and our undergraduate students add to the diversity that makes the college such a special place,” she explained. “Indeed, we pride ourselves on the support we provide to our students and we have a very simple purpose; that is to help people.

“We believe that by continuing in education and training and developing higher level skills, you are putting yourself in a very strong position to improve your life chances. For some, that will mean improving career prospects and for others it will mean expanding skills and knowledge.”

Kelly Sheppard had been a stay-at-home mum for ten years while overseeing the admin and accounts for her husband’s business. However, after completing an Access to HE course at Bath College, she has now gained a place at the University of Bristol to study Molecular Medicine. She decided to apply to the access course after years of regretting the decision not to pursue sciences after GCSE level.

Laurel Penrose, Principal awarding Kelly Sheppard her Access to Higher Education Certificate

“I found out from a family member who was returning to education that I could obtain funding for the course and decided to take the plunge. I had applied for many entry level jobs within research and had been unsuccessful. Now I’m so glad this was the case because it pushed me to go and get a degree level qualification. It’s an extremely intense course, but it has really boosted my confidence and opened my eyes to what I can achieve.”

Another local mum who has benefited from her time at Bath College is Sian Brady who is studying at Bath College to become a nurse.

“By studying part time at Bath College, it allows me to combine being a mum with work and study. All the teachers at the college are very supportive and I recommend any parent thinking of changing careers or wanting to go to university to do the Access to HE course.

“I’m finding the course very enjoyable and have met mums just like myself. I am looking forward to a completing my course and getting the qualifications I deserve.”

For Bath mum, Sian Brady, Bath College allowed her the chance to study to become a nurse

For more information about Access Courses at Bath College visit