I’m trying to decide what I want to do when I grow up; when I’m not full of self-doubt and anxiety. Aged 53 and 3/4 I don’t yet know when that will be.  I’ve never “been” to university.  I studied part-time (distance and evenings) for my UG degree in Education Studies.  That doesn’t count as ‘being at university’.  Two months after I graduated with a first class honours degree my son was offered (and accepted) a UG place at University of Manchester; my mother was so excited and declared he was ‘the first person in our family to go to university’. Such is life and such is family!

When I was 18 I made the choice to become a nurse rather than go to teacher-training college and become a teacher.  Back in the dark ages (1982) you didn’t go to university to nurse you trained on the job and it was scary and magnificent.  I knew then what I wanted to do. Then life happened, moving to the coast for a job, meeting a chap, marriage, two children a house/mortgage (later divorce) and priorities changed.  I became a dinner-lady for six weeks; almost 25 years later I’m still working to improve education chances for children and young people.

For now I’m a government social researcher working in the Department for Education, based in Manchester. When I was 18 I knew that working in an office sitting behind a ‘type-writer’ all day was most definitely what I didn’t want to do.

My course

The Masters in Social Research Methods and Statistics (SMRS). I’m studying part-time so it will take two years. This academic year I’m on campus on a Thursday.

They’re recruiting for 2018 now so if you’re interested check it out. Most of my peers are working full-time, there are only three of us tackling a part-time masters and a full-time job.

Content Ambassador

I applied for an exciting new opportunity, to develop content for the My Manchester social media and web-sites. Amazingly they wanted an old woman at school in their team.

I was interested to join because I know I will be having a quite specific experience; specific, but not entirely unique. I hope to be able to share my experience in a way which will help other people, prospective students, current students, old women, young men, mothers, sons and just good old nosey parkers (like me). This takes me back to the beginning.  When I was 18 I knew I always wanted to help people.

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

“When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.”
― Maya Angelou