OCN NI Learning Endeavour Award Winners 2023
GIANT ACHIEVEMENTS BY OCN LEARNERS RECOGNISED
Adam Keefe, Head Coach of the Belfast Giants was the special guest at the OPEN COLLEGE NETWORK NI (OCN NI) Learning Endeavour Awards 2023 at Titanic Exhibition Suite. The annual awards, now in their 5th year, were hosted by Denise Watson and aim to celebrate the achievements of learners who have gone to exceptional lengths to achieve their learning goals.
A number of awards and bursaries were given to learners and providers from across the province who have achieved extraordinary results, with some learners overcoming numerous personal hurdles to achieve their professional and technical OCN qualification as part of their lifelong learning journey.
Martin Flynn, CEO, OCN NI, said: “ The learners we have recognised and honoured today have shown tremendous commitment and determination to achieve their learning goals and it has been an inspiration to all of us listening to their stories of achievement and advancement. Motivation to succeed has been a common theme with many of our learners so it was fitting that we had Adam Keefe, Head Coach of the history making ‘treble’ Belfast Giants to hand over the awards and bursary cheques to our learners and providers.
The Third Sector Learner of the Year winner was Ayanle Adam Hassan from Start360, taking home the Schools Learner of the Year award was Johanna McStravick, St Louise’s College, Co Antrim; OCN Provider of The Year category winner was SERC, Co Down and the Inspiring Tutor/Teacher of the Year award went to Anna McBride, Malone Integrated College, Belfast.
The Health & Well-being Learner of the Year went to Shauna Christie, Action Mental Health, Co Antrim; Third Sector Learner of the Year went to Ayanle Adam Hassan, Start360, Co Antrim and North West Regional College won the Advancing Learning Through Innovation category.
Adam Keefe, Head Coach of the Belfast Giants said: “Listening to some of the powerful stories of personal achievement, sometimes in exceptionally difficult circumstances has been a real inspiration. It just goes to show what you achieve when you put your mind to it. As a Coach myself, I’m used to trying to motivate and push our team to the limit, so I applaud all of the learners in the room today and their various support networks for the remarkable achievements they have attained.”
The final award of the ceremony, the Hilary Sloan MBE Learning Endeavour Award, in memory of former OCN NI Chair who was a powerful advocate of life-long learning, was announced by OCN NI Chairperson Paul Donaghy. Paul said: “The Hilary Sloan MBE Learning Endeavour Award winner for 2023 is, Shauna Christie of Action Mental Health, who will receive an additional £1,000 learning bursary. Massive congratulations to Shauna and all of our shortlisted finalists and category winners.”