Lifelong learning award for 79 year old student

Thursday 9 August 2001

A 79-year old St Andrews student has been commended for her dedication to lifelong learning.

Part-time Master of Arts student Mrs Elma Cheetham, who left school in 1938, is the first recipient of the Fife Council Convener’s Prize and has been singled out for her achievements in the 2000-01 session.

The part-time evening class initiative, which was launched last year, is aimed at adults over the age of 21 who would like to study for a degree.

Elma’s first year subjects are IT and English, while her subsequent years will focus on a range of subjects including Scottish History, Europe and the USA in the 21st Century, Biology, Physics and Astronomy and Art and Theology. Depending on prior qualifications and whether the student prefers to study one or two evenings a week, a General MA degree can be obtained within 3 to 8 years.

Mrs Cheetham, who hopes to graduate just before her 83rd birthday, said, “When I left school, my family could not afford to send me to University and, despite doing a few interesting jobs and having my three wonderful children, I always regretted not going onto higher education. When I saw the advert for the part-time course, I thought “why not?” and decided to take up the challenge which has been a marvellous opportunity for me. Not only have I learnt a lot but have met some wonderful new friends, both students and tutors.”

Meanwhile, Part-time Degree Co- ordinator Nicky Haxell said, “Elma has been an inspiration to all students enrolled on the course because of her resilience, determination and constant good humour. For the lecturers and tutors, she has been an assiduous and conscientious student who has contributed in so many ways to the positive learning environment they have promoted in this wider access programme. We are delighted to have her as our senior student on the evening degree course.”

Students returning to study after a gap are eased back into the way of things with a specially- designed study skills programme at the start of the course. Various financial arrangements are also in place to help those on low incomes take advantage of this flexible academic programme.

Further information about the degree course can be obtained from Nicky Haxell, Part-time Degree Co- ordinator, Centre for Continuing Education, 66 North Street, St Andrews KY16 9AH, telephone 01334 462203.


NOTE TO EDITORS – You are invited to send a reporter/photographer to Conference Room 1, Younger Hall, North Street, St Andrews at 6.15pm on Monday 13 August 2001 when Mrs Cheetham, a representative from Fife Council, University of St Andrews Dean of Arts Ann Kettle and Part-time Degree Coordinator Nicky Haxell will be available for interviews/photographs.

Issued by Beattie Media on behalf of the University of St Andrews For more information please contact Claire Grainger on 01334 462530, 07730 415 015 or email [email protected] Ref: elma/standrews/chg/10aug2001


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