Gary graduates from Ulster University Business School

Wednesday 13 September 2017

Gary, Cedar service user now volunteer, recently graduated from Ulster University Business School with a BSc (Hons) in Business Studies.

Gary was involved in Cedar’s ESF Inclusion Works Service to support him on his personal journey to achieve a University qualification, but to do this he would have to manage the impact of his brain injury.

Mark Erskine and Denise Clements, Cedar Brain Injury Case Officers assisted Gary in writing a personal action plan that would set out the steps to achieving his goal.  Their disability specialist knowledge meant that Gary had the right support to overcome the barriers a brain injury presented along the way.  This included teaching him a range of practical strategies to meet the demands of university study and providing on-going encouragement to maintain his confidence and motivation throughout his journey.  It also included support to find and apply for his course of choice, sourcing student finance and connecting him with the university’s Learning Support team

Cedar supported Gary to explain the challenges his brain injury presented in the university learning environment  so that the UU Learning Support team were able to provided Gary with tools and adaptations tailored to best accommodate his individual needs.

He told us “I did find university somewhat daunting throughout the first year and had doubts I would cope studying at degree level with a head injury but the move was greatly aided by Ulster University’s Learning Support team, along with guidance and support from Cedar’s Inclusion Works Brain Injury service."

Gary and his family enjoyed the summer graduation day at the Waterfront Hall on Friday 7th July, along with hundreds of other students. At the event students were formally presented with certificates in recognition and celebration of their hard work and achievements.  For Gary this was a particularly momentus occasion given the personal challenges he overcame to reach this point.

“Without the help I got from both Cedar and the University I believe I would have struggled throughout my studies. Both parties played a vital role in my determination to achieve, and the actual achievement of my 2:1 degree and I’m very thankful for them!”

Inclusion Works is person-centred service supporting individuals to design their own programmes around their needs and aspirations, building confidence and independence. to meet their employability and inclusion goals. It is funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) and all five local Health and Social Care Trusts.

If you require any additional information about how to get involved with the service please contact or 028 9061 2424 or 028 2565 9111


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