Discovering that Truro College offered the opportunity to study the FdA History, Heritage and Archaeology course in Cornwall, Hugh Exley decided to move from his home near Cardiff to access the readily available coastline, beaches, moorland and heritage industry in Cornwall that provided an excellent subject for his degree studies.
From holiday to career, Hugh had found out about the course in a unique way, and it meant that his holiday to Cornwall had certainly paid off: “I was in Cornwall on holiday when I found out about the course in a Cornwall Living magazine. I did a bit of research when I got home and then applied while I was still living in Cardiff.”
Moving away may seem like a daunting task at first, but Hugh hit the ground running, not finding it so difficult to move away from home, rent a student house in Truro and gain his own independence.
I definitely have no regrets whatsoever. The FdA History, Heritage and Archaeology course was really interesting and we got the chance to learn about different periods in time and ethics in archaeology.
Entering the College without GCSE passes in English and Maths, Hugh was able to re-sit these exams while studying for the first year of his Foundation Degree, setting him up for future employment within the industry. Hugh then progressed to the BA (Hons) Archaeology top-up year to complete the full degree, increasing his chances of being able to look for work within the heritage or archaeology-surveying field upon graduation. He said: “I want to keep my new maths skills ticking away and archaeology-surveying is a great route for employment.”
It was while studying for a BTEC Business course in Cardiff that Hugh realised his interest in history and later archaeology too. Determined to study a University Course despite the change in subject interest, Hugh was amazed at how understanding the College was: “Truro College has been great because they accept people on to the course who have a genuine interest in the subject, even if they don’t necessarily have the qualifications. That includes mature students and people from different backgrounds, all with a common interest in history.”
Although his journey to get to this point hadn’t been easy, Hugh was helped greatly by the support and guidance available at the College: “The support I’ve had from the tutors has been really good, particularly 1-1 tutorial sessions and dissertation help. The quality of teaching, as well as the access to library resources both here and online at Plymouth University has been great.”