Meet the Learner: Kayleigh puts higher education centre stage

24 March 2021

Name: Kayleigh Barton
Foundation Degree in Performing Arts
Crosskeys Campus

University study is a big step. But as learner Kayleigh Barton discovered, you don’t have to go far from home to take your career to the next level thanks to our higher education courses which are available on your doorstep.

With ambitions of becoming a successful actress, Kayleigh found her ideal Foundation Degree in Performing Arts in an environment that suits her. And she’s loving every minute of it so far…

Why did you choose Coleg Gwent for your university-level course?

“After studying A Levels, I knew that I’d always wanted to go to University. As I was researching different Universities and courses, I discovered that some places I may have to live at a University and I wasn’t comfortable in doing that.

I saw that I could take this course in Cardiff and do the entirety of the course there. However, I then came across the same course here at Coleg Gwent’s Crosskeys Campus that delivered the same qualification. So, I decided to go to Crosskeys for an interview to see if I was able to join this course and I was given a tour of the facilities as well. Once I’d been given the tour, I was very satisfied that I knew what my decision was going to be!

Since starting in September, I have felt welcomed by everyone I meet, and I’m so happy that I get to study in such an amazing environment! On my first day, I was really nervous to be meeting new people on the course, but as soon as I started those nerves disappeared, because it wasn’t just me who was starting this for the first time. We all helped and supported one another and have continued to do so, and I know we’ll all continue to have one another’s back.”

Why did you choose the Foundation Degree in Performing Arts?

“I’ve always enjoyed the field of Drama and Acting since a very young age, so there was no shadow of a doubt that this is what I wanted to do for my future career. My favourite part of the whole Drama and Acting career is 100% the dancing, the singing and the acting on stage. I feel like every time I’m in a show and I step on a stage, it feels like home. I always get the feeling and think this is definitely where I really want to be now and in the future.

So, I chose to take the Foundation Degree in Performing Arts when I was looking at UCAS and my different options for University courses at the end of my A Levels. Once I found this course, I decided to do more research into it to see what it involved, and as I was doing the research, I just immediately connected to this course. It had everything that I wanted to do and everything that I was looking for.”

What do you like most about your course?

“Since starting, I’ve enjoyed every second of it! I’ve loved meeting new tutors and making new friends. With the modules that we’ve completed so far, I’ve had the chance to meet professionals I never thought I would meet. Those include Owen Thomas, Gareth John Bale, Richard Harrington and Tracy Harris. I’m so excited to see what the next steps are on this course and I know I’m going to enjoy every moment of it!”

What’s been your biggest achievement in college so far?

“So far, my biggest achievement has been meeting the professionals. Since starting in September, the number of professionals that I’ve been able to meet and even work with for a module has been amazing! It was an opportunity that I never thought I’d get. Every professional I’ve met has given me amazing feedback which I can use for my future career and will continue to use to benefit my skills as an actress.

Welsh Playwrights - Tracy Harris, Richard Harrington, Gareth John Bale and Owen Thomas

Welsh Playwrights – Tracy Harris, Richard Harrington, Gareth John Bale and Owen Thomas

Another achievement that I am really proud of was getting my first grade back. On my first assignment, I achieved a 2:1 which was quite high up on the marking criteria. I’m so happy with that grade and feel like it’s a really good achievement for my first assignment!”

What’s the best thing about studying a university-level course at Coleg Gwent?

“One of the best things has definitely been meeting new friends. I’ve met such amazing friends and I know they will be friends for life! It is one of the things I look forward to in coming into uni every day. They make the course so much fun and we all know we can work really well together. Another thing that has been one of the best is meeting the tutors. They’ve been so welcoming and have made the start of the course really interesting and intriguing and I know will continue to do so!”

What are your long-term goals after finishing your Foundation Degree?

“My long-term goals are to continue on this course and then for my final year, I go off to Cardiff University to study the BA Honours Degree in Performing Arts. Then hopefully, with the help of the next two years here at Coleg Gwent, I will have developed the skills that I need to be a successful actress!”

Any advice for students thinking of studying a university-level course at Coleg Gwent?

“My advice for future students who want to study university-level courses at Coleg Gwent would be to go for it! Take every opportunity that comes your way, because you don’t know if the opportunity will come up again. Also, take every day as it comes and always try your best even if you’re struggling. You can only do the best with the amount of effort you put in!”

Higher Education doesn’t have to be daunting. By studying locally at Coleg Gwent, you can gain a university-level qualification without moving away from family and friends, and it will cost you less too! So, if you’re exploring your higher education options and want to take your career to the next level like Kayleigh, why not join our Higher Education Virtual Open Event. Discover university-level courses closer to home, so you can study near, and go far!