Learning progression students charity fundraiser in memory of David Amess

Students on the Pathway to Independence course at South Essex College’s Southend campus, hosted a charity fundraiser for the Music Man Project in David Amess’s memory. 

David Amess was patron of The Music Man Project, an award-winning, world record breaking music education and performance service for people with learning disabilities.

The charity cake sale was held at the Southend campus reception on Monday 15 November, accompanied by music on the keyboard by Founder and CEO of The Music Man Project, and Disability and Access Ambassador for Arts & Culture, David Stanley. 

The students completed the charity fundraiser as part of their social action project with the National Citizen Service and raised £113.17 for the charity.

Tim Keech, Youth Engagement and Retention Manager at the National Citizen Service, said: “The NCS social action project has helped the South Essex College students develop so many skills from networking, team work, project management and public speaking.”

“The confidence gained from giving something back to the community and continuing the legacy of Sir David Amess and music man’s work has been clear to see. Some of the students gave impassioned speeches, and we even had some musical performances from them on the day. Thank you to everyone for a hugely positive day.”

Phoebe Sleigh Johnson, Student Learning Coach at South Essex College, said: “This was a really worthwhile and inspiring event for the students on the Pathways to Independence course and they had a great day raising money for The Music Man Project.”

“The £113.17 raised as a result of all this hard work will be going straight to The Music Man Project, to help them achieve their dream of performing on Broadway in America. A massive thank you is owed to David Stanley for attending the day, all the students involved, the NCS staff that worked with the students, and the support staff from ALS who assisted with this event.”

David Stanley, Founder and CEO of The Music Man Project, and Disability and Access Ambassador for Arts & Culture, said: “It was such a pleasure to visit the wonderful students on the NCS Programme at South Essex College. On behalf of everyone at The Music Man Project charity, I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to them all for raising money for us and for raising awareness of our work – especially as they did so in memory of our late President, Sir David Amess.”

“Sir David was the greatest champion. He always celebrated the achievements of our musicians with learning disabilities at every opportunity and was particularly proud when we performed at both the London Palladium and the Royal Albert Hall. It means so much that Sir David’s legacy will live on in the people of Southend and through the wider learning-disabled community who play our music and sing our songs across the UK and around the world. “

To learn more about the Music Man Project, visit: www.themusicmanproject.com 

Success stories

Celebrating Success 2022: Maison Lundrigan

Celebrating Success 2022: Maison Lundrigan

Course studied

Motor Vehicle Maintenance and Repair Level 3 Diploma

It’s a great college, especially for people with disabilities. The support I received from my tutor Charlie was brilliant. I really enjoyed the practical, hands-on aspect of the course.

Maison Lundrigan was named Motor Vehicle Student of the Year for his dedication and the consistent hard work he put into his studies.

The 18-year-old was praised for the high quality of his work and the fact that he was the first to pass his online exams. 

He has excelled during his time at the college, so much so, he is now embarking on a three-year apprenticeship programme at the college.

Maison has achieved all this despite living with additional needs.

He said it felt ‘brilliant’ to win the award and ‘it’s made me realise that I can achieve even with my disability.’

He added: “I chose the college because it offered the right course for me.

“It’s a great college, especially for people with disabilities. The support I received from my tutor Charlie was brilliant. I really enjoyed the practical, hands-on aspect of the course.”

Maison is now looking forward to his apprenticeship so he can pursue his dream of becoming a car mechanic.

His tutor said: “He is a pleasant and well-mannered young man that any college or employer would be pleased to have. Maison has a very bright future ahead of him.”

Celebrating Success 2022: Luke Lambert

Celebrating Success 2022: Luke Lambert

Course studied

Performing and Production Arts (Musical Theatre) Level 3 Extended Diploma

I have enjoyed receiving honest feedback and having the opportunity to grow as a performer. Tutors really encourage their students.

Performing Arts Student of the Year, Luke Lambert, has won his award because in every respect, his development and improvement has been outstanding.

Luke said that he feels extremely proud and grateful for the recognition. 

He said: “I chose to study at the college because I went to the open day with my parents. We were all really excited by the course and impressed by Richard and his ambition for his students.”

He added: “The course has been great for learning professional etiquette, as well as the actual training. I have enjoyed receiving honest feedback and having the opportunity to grow as a performer. Richard and Neil really encourage their students.” 

Luke’s tutor said: “Luke is an outstanding student. The development of his skills set during his time at this college is phenomenal which has been rewarded by casting him in the lead of the cohorts FMP production of ‘Spring Awakening’. As a result of his continuous diligence and want to improve, he has achieved offers from four top London Drama Schools to study Musical Theatre, Bird College, Arts Educational, Italia Conti and Guildford Conservatoire (GSA). This is far above what was expected at the beginning of his training. 

“He has demonstrated that he is highly motivated to succeed in this industry and aspires to always do his best. He is polite and well-mannered at all times to both his peers and his tutors. He is extremely well respected  by his cohort. He is always supportive of them and goes out of his way to help them. 

“He has become a very influential member of the group in so many positive ways. Behaviour, focus and attention to detail is impeccable and cannot be faulted. He has met every deadline for both practical and academic tasks. A faultless time at this college.”

Luke will be studying for a BA (Hons) in Musical Theatre at ArtsEd in London from September and his ultimate ambition is to be performing leading roles in the West End. 

Celebrating Success 2022: Zoe Souto

Celebrating Success 2022: Zoe Souto

Course studied

Animal Care Level 2 Diploma

Zoe Souto, 17, from Rayleigh, studied Level 2 Animal Care at the college’s Southend campus.

She was nominated for the award for her excellent attendance and attitude to college life and for completing work before deadlines to a very high standard.

Her tutor said: “Zoe is a very calming influence on the group. She keeps up-to-date with all work and goes above and beyond what is expected.

“Zoe may be hearing impaired but she never lets that act as a barrier to her learning and does everything to a great standard. I often have to set her work from level 3 to keep her ticking over.”

Zoe said: “I feel so proud of myself and surprised as I didn’t expect to be nominated, let alone win. I enjoyed all the support that was given during my course and have always been made to feel at home at the college.”

Zoe’s ambition for the future is to run her own pet services business or run her own cattery.