KEITH KIELY from Southill has gone through college with the support of the Access and Limerick City Based Education Initiative (LeBEl) schemes and believes that both contributed to his academic success.
He did a degree in English and History, is currently studying for a Master’s in International Studies and plans to start a doctorate in political science next year.
He believes that the support from LeBEl acted like a safety net and prepared him fully for life outside the home. He found the budgeting advice especially helpful, because when you are in first year you do not know how to manage your money. “At the start you are spending more than you are bringing in,” he said,
“The young people in the area are4 not just normal kids, but people who are driven to make something of themselves,'” Keith said.
“It is almost like a reaction against what they see, these kids have ambition and want to do something worthwhile with their lives,” he pointed out.
In the Census of2006 it was revealed that 43 per cent of parents in the area finished their fonnal education at priimary level. “For a long time college was the least attractive option,” he said. but now it is the way forward and for many 11 is the way out .
Keith emphasised that making the decision to go to U L was the “most productive and best investment” he ever made.
Being from a socially disadvantaged area should not stifle a student’s chance at going to university and making the most out of their life, he added.
University life is well worth pursuing. it can change you for the better. inspire you, and will “probably be the best four years of your life and you’ll have a great laugh as well,” he said.
“No matter who you are or what you are doing you could have the ability to go t0 college.” according to Keith.