Kevin “Kevso” Burkitt is a popular character at City College with both students and staff. Winner of 2022’s Media, Computing and Games Development Student of Year, Kevso has progressed from an Access to Higher Education course to a full degree in computer science.
For Kevso, reaching this point has been more challenging than most. Kevso returned to education in his 40s following a career in administration. He had always wanted to study computing but being deaf made this a challenge.
Kevso explained: “Accessing university was difficult for me, but then I was made redundant and, having learned more about the Disabled Students Allowance, I decided now was the time to pursue an interest that I’d had since I was a teenager.”
To support Kevso’s attendance, he was assigned a communication support worker to help with activities such as note-taking whilst he completed his Access course. As he progressed to higher education, it was important that he was provided with a BSL interpreter.
Despite various challenges, Kevso has enjoyed being back in education. He said: “Learning is interesting and challenging, but fun as well. My lecturers would find the time to provide me with clarification if I was unsure. The staff I had the most contact with learned some basic sign language, and I never felt excluded.
“After completing the FdSc Computer Systems Development, I completed a top-up year giving me a full BSc (Hons) in Applied Computer Science. At graduation, I had the honour of leading all the graduates from the hall at the end. And it was a privilege to be awarded the Academic Partnerships Prize for 2022, things I never thought possible 20 years ago.”