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West Cheshire College student Vince Irvine, 36, from Chester, hasn’t been in the motor trade long and has already set his sights on becoming a Workshop Manager.

Having been awarded the ‘Motor Vehicle Student of the Year’ at the Annual College Awards earlier this year, Vince has landed himself a full time position at a local Volkswagen main dealership.

At the age of 36, heading back into full time education, following more than 15 years away, was a daunting prospect for Vince. He had worked in numerous professions but felt it was now time for a change.

With a love for mixed martial arts, a sports qualification was an obvious choice, however this was a hobby and a passion for Vince, not necessarily a career option. Therefore, the enjoyment he gained from working on his own car led him to pursue a Diploma in Transport Maintenance.

Vince commented: “It took me some time to gain the courage to walk back into College and it was certainly a shock at first but after a month into it I completely fell on my feet and really enjoyed the course.

“Helping to tutor some of the younger students was equally encouraging for me and I really couldn’t have asked for anymore from my tutors, they have been amazing.

“I managed to complete my Level 1 Motor Vehicle qualification in just six-months and am now working at Volkswagen. This time last year I couldn’t have dreamt that I’d be where I am today. I am earning well, have great career prospects and even own two cars.

“Taking on and completing this course has really turned my life around. I still can’t quite believe it.”

Vince started work at Volkswagen just over three months ago after completing his GCSE Maths and English exams, and is already flying.

He went on to say: “I am absolutely loving work. The team here are incredible and really supportive.

“Since starting I have been fast tracked and have now begun branded training with a view to qualifying by December or at the latest March of next year. This will see me reach level 3/4, which is great for my career progression and much quicker than I anticipated.”

Tony Walker, Tutor at West Cheshire College commented: “Vince has been a truly outstanding student and ambassador for the College.

“Having demonstrated great skill and passion throughout the course, as well as supporting and encouraging fellow students along the way, we are absolutely delighted that he has now gone on to secure a role in a highly regarded dealership.

“His success has been recognised from both his tutors and his peers and we would like to wish Vince all the best for the future.”