Aaron Hume, Transition in Action

Usually when we post a student experience story we write an introductory paragraph setting the scene.

In this case Aaron Hume has made our job very easy for us so why not read his inspiring story in his own words. Enjoy! 

Hello, my name is Aaron Hume, I am 18 and I am currently a student at West Lothian College on the Transition in Action course within, Assisted Programmes. I am also a Student Association Ambassador. 

Before college I went to Cederbank high school. I attended a 12 week transition to college course at West Lothian College and really enjoyed it. 

After this taster, I felt College was the next step for me.

In the future I want to manage my own café, so after speaking with a career's advisor, I applied to college and was accepted on an Assisted Programs course. 

Although, if I am being honest, I was really going to college for the café food! 

Assisted Programmes courses are designed for people who have additional support needs, like myself. It gives students the skills for life, future study and employment/volunteering and an opportunity to try taster sessions of various courses around the college.  

I have multiple disabilities, including cerebral palsy, autism and a learning disability. 

Cerebral palsy can affect people differently, but for me it means muscles all over my body don't work very well, so I struggle to walk and use my hands properly, my throat and voice muscles don't work very well, and my eyesight is affected by a time delay from what I see to what my brain processes.  I also have a learning difficulty which is pretty common for people with cerebral palsy.   

My autism affects me in different way, I do not like certain sounds or loud noises, I do not like changes to my routines, I find new situations hard to deal with.

I mimic people and behaviours and sometimes this hides my learning disability.  My learning disability affects lots of my life and I am not good with numbers or recognising money.

I struggle with long tasks and I am better at completing lots of little ones. 

I am however, very good at lots of things. I am good at sharing my opinion and supporting others, I am great at shopping and always find a bargain!

I initially started off on the Foundation Skills course, but three months later I was moved up to Transition in Action.  

I handed in a piece of coursework about the rights of children and young people and was given great feedback.  A meeting was held the next day, by my lecturers and they felt that the Foundation Skills class was not offering me much of a challenge, so we discussed the possibility of me progressing onto another course. I decided to do this as it was a new challenge, a two-year course and some students from my school were already there.

The support at college has been great. Staff set me up on a video link within the class, when I was not able to come in as I was shielding.

Worksheets were made accessible on the college computers, so it was easy for me, because I find writing hard.

The support has been massive help for me. 

I heard about the Student Association when I started my course.  When I was at school I was an ambassador for inclusion and education in the student council, so I applied to be a volunteer working with the Student Association team.

I enjoy being a part of the Student Association because I have a big voice.

From the first day as a Student Association Ambassador, I felt part of the team.  I have also joined the college DIVE group as a student association member The DIVE group is all about equality and diversity and I am enjoying being involved.

My role in the student association has included helping with surveys, focusing on wellbeing and helping to set up channels on Microsoft Teams for students to support students online. 

It has been an amazing experience so far and I have never looked back.

Next year I am going to run for an executive team position within the Student Association, because I want to help even more and continue being part of a great team.  

I am really passionate that everybody should access higher education no matter of age. disability, race and gender.  

I would recommend West Lothian College to everybody thinking of applying to study here because it is a high quality place of learning, the staff are all lovely here and I am having a great experience!