A Coleg Menai student was given the opportunity to have her say on issues affecting Wales recently, after being invited to take part in a debate that was aired live on the BBC on St. David's Day.

24-year old Zoe Crew from Penmaenmawr was delighted to take part in the Wales Live Debate, which was hosted by Bethan Rhys Roberts and Jason Mohammad at Llandudno's Venue Cymru. Panellists were Janet Finch-Saunders (Conservatives), Siân Gwenllian (Plaid Cymru), Ken Skates (Labour), Claire Fox (Brexit Party) and John Rostron (Co-founder of the Sŵn Festival and Making Music Manager, Wales).

Zoe asked the politicians to explain how they would address the unfair advantages the rest of Wales has compared to North Wales.

Mum-of-one Zoe said,

Taking part was nerve-wracking, but so exciting! If you'd have told me years ago that I would one day be taking part in a televised political debate, I would never have believed you! 

Having been in and out of jobs for a number of years, moving from retail to catering in her search for a new challenge, Zoe finally decided to aim a little higher. Taking a huge leap of faith, she signed up for an Access to Higher Education diploma at Coleg Menai, Bangor.

Access courses are perfect for anyone who would like to start a university course, but who have no formal qualifications. The diplomas can be undertaken in a variety of topics, including Biosciences, Healthcare and Humanities, and many universities accept them, allowing individuals to continue their education with a relevant degree.

Zoe added,

When I decided to return to education, I never expected it to have such a positive effect on me as a person. I used to be quite shy and reluctant to speak up about anything, but my course has given me the confidence and knowledge to voice my opinions. The thought of university scared me a little once, but this course has made me push boundaries and has given me the best possible foundation for the next level. I'm going to study a Sociology degree at Bangor University next, and I am definitely looking forward to the challenge!

Access Lecturer Liz Stellas said,

Zoe has worked so very hard, and has shown real dedication to her studies. It has been wonderful watching her skills and her confidence develop during the course of the diploma, and I am certain that she will flourish at university.

For more information on Access to Higher Education courses at Coleg Menai, please visit www.gllm.ac.uk/access