Meet our Alumni
KIRELLOS ABDEL MISEIH
“I didn't know what subjects to do at first, but the tutors helped me by finding out my interests and making recommendations. Soon after, I re-discovered the pleasure of learning.”
Success isn’t always straightforward and sometimes it takes time and perseverance to reach your goals and aspirations. One of our Leeds Sixth Form students, Kirellos Abdel Miseih, proves that anything is possible when you’re dedicated and work hard, after walking away from results day with A*, A and a B in psychology, art and English, respectively.
Born and raised in Italy, Kirellos didn’t do very well in his exams. He lost hope and had no determination or ambitions. He said: “I left college at home with no long term plan. I did nothing for a year and adopted an unhealthy lifestyle of drinking and smoking.” After arriving in the UK in 2015 with limited English skills, the 21-year-old struggled to get a place at schools and colleges, until he discovered Leeds Sixth Form.
He continued: “My friends and family told me not to do A levels as they would be too difficult for me and I wouldn’t succeed. I wanted to prove them wrong, so I enrolled at the sixth form.
"I didn't know what subjects to do at first, but the tutors helped me by finding out my interests and making recommendations. Soon after, I re-discovered the pleasure of learning and the luxury of education. I loved all my tutors; they supported me and are motivated in what they do.”
Despite Kirellos’s success, he found art challenging at first. “I used to draw a lot when I was younger but for the first three or four months of studying it, I didn’t enjoy art and found it very challenging. My teacher persuaded me to stick at it and I soon grew to love it again and began to take inspiration from other artists.
"A great achievement for me is getting a B in English. It wasn’t that long ago since I was studying it at functional skills level."
“Psychology turned out to be the most enjoyable subject. It’s fascinating to learn about human behaviour. Ultimately, I’m very grateful to all my teachers who were all supportive and made my time at Leeds Sixth Form an amazing and memorable one.”
Kirellos is now heading to London to study psychology at King’s College London. His long-term plan is to remain in academia as a lecturer and researcher in neuroscience.
“The teaching here was the biggest difference. Tutors were always willing to help and go the extra mile to meet our needs. They made me feel relaxed and gave me a homely place to start again.”
Leeds Sixth Form gave Grace Firth another chance after she failed her A levels at school. Following a break from education, she came here and walked away with a B and two As in law, psychology and sociology, respectively.
She said: “I didn’t enjoy my time at school, the teaching wasn’t good and only focused on grades. Coming here made a huge difference. I wanted to start my A levels from scratch and this was the perfect setting and environment for me to do so.
“The teaching here was the biggest difference. Tutors were always willing to help and go the extra mile to meet our needs. They made me feel relaxed and gave me a homely place to start again, which made me motivated to succeed.”
Grace made new friends and met people from diverse backgrounds. Alongside her studies, she had a weekend job that was sometimes a challenge. “At one point during my time here, the pressure of trying to work, study and fit in a social life got to me and I broke down.
“Thanks to the wellbeing team at college, I got the support I needed and managed to get back on track. I was also nominated to be a student leader, which allowed me to help fellow students with any difficulties they were facing.” The 19-year-old was pleased to see her results after two years of hard work. “I couldn’t believe it, even my mum started crying with happiness.
“I would like to say thank you to all my teachers, especially Glenis, who made me love psychology.” Grace will be heading to Nottingham Trent University to study psychology and hopes to specialise in sport psychology or forensics.