Penny gets addicted to learning after union organizes courses

Penny Grimsditch is a machine operator and recently caught the learning bug after signing up to a functional skills English course organized by her union – she is now enrolled on a number of distance learning courses and building her skills.

BFAWU member Penny

Penny works at Fox’s Biscuits in Batley and is a BFAWU Shop Steward who is soon planning to become and Union Learning Rep. She has been getting back into studying after signing up for, and passing, a City and Guilds functional skills English level 2, in January.

Penny said that she had a really enjoyed the classes, saying;

I have had the most positive experience. Firstly, I passed my City and Guilds functional skills English level 2, in January. These were lessons I attended at work, given by tutor Sally Lowndes and supported by Kamran Ali and the learning team.”

The course is part of an ongoing series of learning activities that have been negotiated between the union and the employer though the BFAWU Branch Secretary and the union’s Learning Services Project Worker, Kamran Ali.

Kamran said:

Following an agreement we began promoting courses in the workplace. From the courses promoted the City and Guilds English Level 2 was the most popular amongst the learners and we could easily fill a class with it.”

The union organised the courses through Chesterfield College with two classes running ever week on Tuesdays and Fridays.

However this wasn’t the end of Penny’s learning journey – in fact it was just the start, and she has gone online to continue building her skills as she explains:

This then spurred me on to do more learning so I did an online course with Learning Curve, I achieved a Level 2 certificate in Awareness of Mental Health Problems in March.”

I followed this by doing a Level 2 certificate in Understanding Mental Health First Aid and Mental Health Advocacy-in the workplace, and once I get my results back I’m sure I will be doing another course, like chocolate learning is addictive and unlike chocolate none fattening.”

Penny feels that none of this would have been possible without the help of the BFAWU learning team and she has now decided that she would like to train as a Union Learning Rep so she can help others.

Penny said:

I owe Kamran a box of teabags for his help when I have messaged him with queries.”

My advice for anybody wanting to learn something new or even refresh an old qualification is Do It, you will not go wrong, the learning services are there to help and support you.”