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From ESOL to Barrister – Alumni Success Story

Musa Nela, now 23 and originally an unaccompanied political asylum seeking minor from Albania, came to South & City College to study ESOL early in 2015 as a 17-year-old.

He subsequently enrolled on Level 2 Science at the Hall Green campus in the autumn of 2015 and progressed to complete the BTEC Level 3 Science in 2017, before heading to university to study law.

When asked why he chose South & City College for his education, Musa said “I had heard many positive things about the college, including tutors nurturing success and integrating asylum seekers.”

Musa loved studying science. For every class, the tutor would set-up a practical experiment to cement the learning, which was his favourite part of the lesson.

When reflecting on his time studying with the college, Musa said “South & City took me as a youngster, an asylum seeker in care and shaped me into a man of ambition and dreams. I will be forever thankful to the college and a memory I will not forget anytime soon.”

Originally, Musa wanted to become a doctor, which is why he chose to study science, however, the experiences he had with South & City outside of the classroom showed that he had talent and ability in other areas, when he became the President of the Student Union and Student Governor.

President of the Student Union entitles the holder to represent students at Board of Governors meetings. Musa enjoyed advocating on behalf of students, bringing up issues and areas for improvement. It was something he found he was very good at and passionate about. Hence the change to studying law.

Sardul Dhesi, Deputy Principal recalls, “Student governor is a key role and one Musa held for several years. He was exceptionally good at raising concerns and lobbied for extra student support for mental health and hardship related issues. All of the other governors had nothing but high praise for him and we would love Musa to come back and mentor the next Student Union President.”

After being awarded a Blackstone Scholarship, Musa is now studying for the Barrister Professional course at the University of Law. Once Musa has completed the Bar Exam, he wants to work towards opening his own law firm, focussing on helping care leavers and children in care asylum seekers to get the best opportunities to achieve their potential.

After a decade or so of heading up a law firm, Musa will look into becoming a Member of Parliament, with the ultimate ambition of one day becoming the Prime Minister.

The college wishes Musa every success and we look forward to watching his career progress over the coming years.