A top-performing learner from Caerphilly has received a prestigious award for achieving high A-level grades during the coronavirus pandemic.
Leah Morgan, 18, achieved four A* grades in mathematics, biology, chemistry and physics at Coleg y Cymoedd, and has now received the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales Award in recognition of her excellent examination results during a very difficult period.
The award is designed to reward talented students and encourage them to continue developing their skills in higher education and employment. Previous winners include gold Olympic medallist and joint flag bearer for Team GB at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Hannah Mills, who received the award in 2004 aged 16 and went on to become the most successful female Olympic sailor in history.
Following her strong grades, Leah, from Bedwas, secured a place at Swansea University where she will learn to work with radiation therapy. She is one of a handful of learners in Wales to be awarded an NHS Bursary which will see her tuition fees paid for by NHS Wales and Welsh Government, and a job working in nuclear medicine guaranteed upon completion of her degree.
Mr. Geoff Hughes, Past Master of the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales, visited the colleges’ Nantgarw campus to present the Award to Leah, together with a cheque for £250.
Mr Hughes explained that the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales was initially formed as the Welsh Livery Guild in 1993 by members of the City of London Livery Companies, who wished to extend the Livery traditions within Wales, rewarding talented students to encourage them to develop their skills in Higher Education and Employment.
He added that a primary aim of The Worshipful Livery Company of Wales is to promote education, science, technology and the arts in Wales via the School/Colleges Awards which are presented to students who have achieved outstanding results, often in difficult circumstances.
Congratulating Leah, Mr Hughes said: “Leah has demonstrated via her determination, hard work and excellent examination results that she is a worthy recipient of this year’s award. It has been really interesting speaking with Leah to hear how her love of science, family experiences and commitment to helping other people inspired her choice of course and career path. On behalf of the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales, I wish her every success in her future studies and career.”
Ian Rees, Director of A-Levels, said: “This award is testament to Leah’s hard work and motivation. Staff at the A Level Centre are extremely proud of her achievements during her time at the college. She secured excellent results and has set her sights on a career to help and treat cancer patients and those suffering from neurological conditions. Despite the challenging situation, she knew the grades required and worked hard to achieve them. We wish her every success for the future.”
Speaking after receiving her award, Leah said: “I am so proud to receive this award and would like to thank the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales and also the tutors at the college for all their help and support. It has been difficult studying through Covid, especially during the lockdowns, but when I received my conditional offer from Swansea University, it showed me that I could make the grades and gave me the motivation I needed.”
Thanking Mr. Hughes and the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales, Principal Karen Phillips said: “We are grateful to the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales for their continued support of our learners. Leah has worked so hard and deserves the recognition and Award. Throughout her time at the college, she has been keen to get involved with all aspects of college life, including representing the learners at our Academic Board meetings. I’m sure she will excel in her studies and we wish her good luck for the future.”