Michael is a star!
Date published: 27 June 2012
Students from across the Borough were honoured at a prestigious award ceremony at the Middleton Arena. The Hopwood Hall College students had been selected from thousands of students to receive awards for their achievements.
Hundreds of people including VIPs and friends and family of the award winners packed out Middleton Arena to celebrate the achievements of the learners. VIPs in attendance included the Mayor, Principal Derek O’Toole and the College’s Chair of the Board of Governors Councillor Robert Clegg.
The special guest speaker for the evening was ex-gold medal winning paralympian Marc Woods; Marc had his left leg amputated because of cancer when he was just 17 years old. He had been a County swimmer before the diagnosis and the day after having the stitches out, he started swimming again. His dream was to simply be the best that he could be and just 18 months after he finished his chemotherapy he was selected to represent Great Britain. Marc gave wonderfully motivating and powerful talk, met with cheers by the audience.
As the evening drew to a close, the exciting climax was the announcement of the ‘Star of the Year Award’; Mr O’Toole announced the overall winner as Michael Foley, aged 18 from Rochdale who is studying Game Design at the College.
Interviewed shortly after the shock announcement, Michael said: “Wow! I really didn’t expect this. I’d like to thank the College, they’ve really helped me and inspired me; my tutors Alex Dobson and Michael Simpson have been absolutely brilliant; both of them pushed me to achieve; at first I must admit I was little a bit lazy, but they pushed me to excel. Thank you very much to them and the rest of the staff at Hopwood Hall.”
His tutors, who nominated him for the award said: “Mikey, as he likes to be known, is an excellent example of success here at Hopwood; a learner who struggled at school, he now has a steely determination to succeed and better himself. He is now excelling in his chosen studies his outlook on life has changed and he now relishes new challenges.
Away from college, he is off to help children in Africa and is joining a mission to help save the whales from Japanese Fishermen.
Mikey now believes in himself and his abilities and this alone is a success. We all wish him well in his future endeavours.
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