Sudbury: Student tipped for Raising The Bar Award after attitude change

Matthew Symington matthew.symington@archant.co.uk
Friday, March 14, 2014
8:33 AM

A young man from Sudbury has been nominated for a Raising the Bar award after having turned his life around.

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Ashley Stafford, 18, has been nominated in the ‘Young Person of the Year – Post 16’ category after finding his vocation in filmmaking.

His nominator, Paul Press, runs a filmmakers group called The Sudbury and Great Cornard Young Filmmakers.

“Ashley has turned his life around since I met him four years ago,” said Mr Press. “He was in danger of being excluded by Subdury Upper School for not having the right attitude in school amongst other things.

“He joined my young filmmakers group and soon found his vocation in life. Suffering from dyslexia has probably held Ashley back from achieving more from his school life, but filming has managed to bring out the best in him.

“He has spent hundreds of hours working with myself to gain the necessary skills to go out and find filming jobs for himself to learn even more.

“He works really hard whenever I have a workshop that he can attend, not as a student primarily, but to help other young people. He isn’t afraid to tell people his story and therefore inspire other young people too.

In 2011 Ashley managed to secure a place on the film course at West Suffolk College by providing a showreel of over 30 films he had assisted on, he has been studying there ever since.

Now Ashley has been offered a conditional place at Ravensbourne University to study editing.

“All this from a boy with no GCSEs to speak of,” said Mr Press. “It is for his dedication to learning and sharing of his skills, enthusiasm and lust for life and learning that I wish to nominate this delightful young man.”

“In 2011 he managed to secure a place on the film course at West Suffolk College by providing a showreel of over 30 films he had assisted on and only this week has been offered a conditional place at Ravensbourne University to study Editing. All this from a boy with no GCSE’s to speak of. It is his dedication to learning and sharing of his skills, enthusiasm and lust for life and learning that I wish to nominate this delightful young man!

Name of Nominee:

Ashley Stafford

Award Nominated:

Young Person of the Year - post 16

Education Establishment:

West Suffolk College

Reason for nomination:

I am nominating Ashley as he has turned his life around since I met him 4 years ago. He was in danger of being excluded by Sudbury Upper School for not having the right attitude in school amongst many other things. He joined my young filmmakers group, The Sudbury and Great Cornard Young Filmmakers ( The Offshoot Foundation) and soon found his vocation in life. Suffering from Dyslexia has probably held Ashley back from achieving more from his school life, but filming has managed to bring out the best in him. He has spent hundreds of hours working with myself to gain the necessary skills to go out and find filming jobs for himself to learn even more. He works really hard whenever I have a workshop that he can attend, but not as a student primarily, but to help other young people. He isn’t afraid to tell people his story and therefore inspire other young people too. In 2011 he managed to secure a place on the film course at West Suffolk College by providing a showreel of over 30 films he had assisted on and only this week has been offered a conditional place at Ravensbourne University to study Editing. All this from a boy with no GCSE’s to speak of. It is his dedication to learning and sharing of his skills, enthusiasm and lust for life and learning that I wish to nominate this delightful young man!

My name is:

Paul Press

My email is:

paulpress@mac.com

My phone number is:

01787 370378

Ashley Stafford, a student at West Suffolk College. Ashley has been nominated for the Young Person of the Year award for overcoming personal challenges and demonstrating a real dedication to learning. Ashley left school with few GCSEs but in 2011, secured a place on West Suffolk College’s filming making course where, alongside his own personal time, he has spent hundreds of hours learning about, and making, films. ‘Filming has brought out the best in him’, said Ashley’s nominator. Impressively, Ashley has now been offered a conditional place at university to study editing.

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