Lydia’s dream careerSt Helens College is providing star pupil Lydia, with a stepping stone into a dream career with the launch of St Helens College 14- 16 Academy, an innovative alternative to high school.

Amongst the students enrolling this September is 14-year-old Lydia O'Neil. The current year 9 pupil studying in Knowsley is set to join St Helens College 14-16 Academy to pursue her dream of a career in construction.

The budding Architect will study core GCSEs alongside vocational courses in Construction, Engineering, Psychology, Business and Health and Social Care, to provide her with an early platform into higher education and into employment.

Lydia, from Whiston, said, "I received a booklet through the post on the launch of the College's new 14-16 Academy. After enjoying studying technology at school, I decided to join the 14–16 Academy to enable me to gain vocational qualifications at a much earlier age. I hope the qualifications I gain at the 14-16 Academy will enable me to carry on my studies at the College's Sixth Form or secure an apprenticeship within the industry.

The student who is currently on target for A* GCSEs added, "I have always enjoyed drawing, especially buildings and I hope the Academy will allow me to build on my hobbies in hopes of forming a career within construction. I hope to one day gain the skills necessary to work abroad building schools and houses in remote villages."

Lydia's mum, Deborah O'Neil added, "After finding out about the academy Lydia discovered the vocational courses available at the College and was impressed by the variety of options. Lydia has always been interested in pursuing a career in architecture and she hopes she will be able to pursue her dream of working within the industry by studying subjects such as Construction and Engineering, as well as studying core GCSEs. After meeting with the College Lydia was also impressed by the smaller class sizes which the academy boasts. She's very excited to join the academy this September."

There are still a limited number of places available in the 14-16 Academy. For more information, please call 0800 99 66 99 or visit the 14 - 16 Academy section.