Hello, Daina!

It was really special today to get a drop-in visit from a member of the Class of 2018.

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Daina graduated from Magna in July 2018 at our annual ceremony in Kimmeridge House on the Bournemouth University campus, carefully weighing up her options for the next phase of her journey. After a lot of soul searching, Daina opted not to head out for university but instead to take up an apprenticeship at Thomas Cook, the travel agent.

She has spent the past weeks busily learning the job, including a residential training course in Peterborough. "I'm really enjoying the job." Daina told us, "There is a lot to learn and I'm being trusted with some very responsible tasks for which accuracy and knowledge are key. I have a sales target to meet and I am quickly learning collaborative and teamworking skills that were not a part of everyday life at school."

We asked Daina if there was anything she missed about school life.

"I do miss having a group of people my own age around me," she told us. "Don't get me wrong," she said, "my colleagues are great and this is only me adjusting to my new life. It's just that my peer group is now heading out to freshers' weeks at university. I'm so excited for them all and I know they will all make the most of themselves."

And Daina isn't letting the grass grow under her feet either. Not only is she embarking on a career in travel agency, Daina is already making plans for her own degree course. "In February 2019, I'm taking up a course with the Open University in Astronomy And Planetary Science. I've always had an interest in astronomy and this course will be a great chance to take the middle way between apprenticeship and a degree. I know that the 'earn-and-learn' pathway is tough but I want to use my time to advance my skills, my knowledge and my career options. It will be worth the time and effort... and I think it will be a lot of fun."

Daina told us that she still feels very connected with Magna community and it was delightful to see how many members of staff stopped for a quick catch-up with her during her visit. We hope there will be more drop-ins like this from Daina and our other Magna graduates. We miss having them here with us but that is more than made up for when we hear how much they value their education and a sense of belonging that has them come back and share stories like this.

Thank you Daina. Let's get together again soon!

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