Celebrating Success 2021: Abbigail Hutchings

Adult Student of the Year
Abbigail Hutchings  


Abbigail, from Southend, studied the Access to HE Art and Design course at the college’s Southend campus.

Abbigail was nominated for the award for her dedication and drive and her ambition to pursue Fine Art at university level, despite coping with a difficult background in care and having to deal with anxiety and being a young single mum.

She chose to study at the college as her teachers in the art department have been ‘amazing’, treating Abbigail like an adult and understanding her responsibilities as a single mother who lives on her own. 

Abbigail said: “It feels great winning this award for college, I struggled with education my entire life and spent most of my early teen years not in education until I went Into foster care at age 14 (nearly 15) so it feels amazing winning awards while being in education!”

“I honestly never believe I would go to university but here I am, living and breathing proof that you can make up for lost time when you are older and that foster care doesn't always have to stop you achieving in life.”

Her tutors have praised her on her dedication and said: “Even though she has not always had access to the resources needed to achieve the best grades, she has not let this deter her and in every project, demonstrates her ability to respond to advice and guidance.”

Abbigail has plans to continue her education at University Centre South Essex and has set her mind on achieving her teaching qualification and become an art and design teacher.