Becky Andrews, National Star learner, 1998–2002
Becky, who has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, went to mainstream school. Although she did well with the coursework, she struggled to develop her social skills and find friends.
‘In mainstream school I was the ‘disabled’ student but I just wanted to be Becky. I didn’t want to be ‘Becky the disabled child’, I wanted to be independent like my sisters and to find out who I am.’ – Becky
One of the main reasons Becky chose to come to National Star was its Creative and Performing Arts department. In recognition of the excellent work of students and staff, National Star received the Beacon Award for Art and Design from the Association of Colleges in 2001. Over the years students have enjoyed successful arts trips to London, Paris, Amsterdam, New York and Barcelona. Becky went on one such trip to Valencia.
In her second year she moved into Overton House in Cheltenham. She was in the centre of town and could go shopping on her own, go to the pub with her friends – things she had never done before.
‘National Star helped me to realise how much I can do for myself and how capable I am. It helped me to become an individual and made me see that I really do have something to offer the world.’– Becky
Becky went on to study at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts. She is now the executive officer and a performer of TwoCan Theatre Company, an inclusive performing arts company which she founded with two friends.
She now lives independently with her beloved assistance dog Gino and also works as an administration assistant at EDF Energy in Gloucester, after completing a work skills programme established by National Star and EDF Energy in 2015.