Two students at Cardiff and Vale College have been named as 'learners of the year.'

With their devotion to their subjects and aptness for academic pursuits, Sara Head and Sean Early have scooped Agored Access to Higher Education (HE) Learner of the Year Awards.

The pair took part in the college's 'Access to Higher Education' courses specially designed to instil mature learners with confidence and necessary skills for higher level studies.

The courses, providing a foundation for those planning to stride towards career changes or resuming their studies after a break, are appreciated by learners who join in large numbers each year.

Sean Early, a member of the RAF for five years, opted for the Access to Bioscience course.

Known for his animated academic efforts and readiness to assist his peers, he was elected as representative of the course and clinched distinctions across all his graded units.

His academic journey is moving forward rapidly as he has taken up Environmental Geoscience studies at Bristol University after bagging the Agored Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement.

Cardiff and Vale College principal Sharon James Evans said: "Massive congratulations to Sean for winning Agored Cymru’s Access to HE Learner of the Year for Outstanding Academic Achievement.

"From the very beginning, Sean’s commitment to his course really stood out and the quality of his work has been consistently brilliant."

Sara Head embarked upon the Access to Health Science course at the college after concluding a 20-year long career as an athlete, which included two Paralympic Games.

Despite being hospitalised with covid and spending long hours towards rehabilitation, she held on to her commitment to the Access classes.

Her can-do attitude and high IT proficiency won her much admiration among her peers.

Her commitment garnered for her the Agored Award for Outstanding Commitment to Study and the national Keith Fletcher Memorial Award for Access to HE learners.

Principal James-Evans said: "A huge congratulations to Sara for winning not only Agored’s Access to HE Learner of the Award for Outstanding Commitment to Study but also the UK-wide Keith Fletcher Memorial Award for Outstanding Commitment to Study.

"Sara’s learner journey at CAVC has been a real inspiration to both students and staff alike.

"We’re all massively proud of her."

The Keith Fletcher Awards judge said: "This student has achieved to a high standard despite some extremely serious health challenges.

"The determination that drove her to turn her disability into something that she could use, through sport, to achieve, was then shown after her near disastrous brush with Covid.

"Despite this, she complete her diploma with good grades. Her achievements will change her life and give her an entirely new career."