Keelan O’Hagan who attends NWRC one day a week where he has completed his Level 1 in Construction, was one of 25 students recognised across Northern Ireland for Technical Expertise, and the only student from the city to receive a technical award.
NWRC Lecturer Uel Murphy, who nominated Keelan for the award alongside his teachers Sharon Cassidy and Sharon Thompson, described the 16 year-old as an extremely capable young person who put in enormous effort to not only pass the course but also be recognised as one of the top learners in Northern Ireland.
He added: “Every day I see Keelan he has a smile on his face. No matter what is happening he manages to cope with every challenge. He takes nothing for granted and everything he does, he does with a smile on his face.
“This is a huge honour for Keelan, his school and for NWRC. Not only has he acquired hugely beneficial skills in Carpentry & Joinery, Painting and Decorating, he has also picked up Life Skills that he will continue to use throughout his education and as he matures.
“We were extremely proud to travel with him to Belfast to see him receive the recognition he so richly deserves.”
Sharon Cassidy, Keelan’s teacher at Ardnashee School and College said:
“We were delighted to see Keelan win this award and would like to offer him our warmest congratulations.”
She added: “Keelan has many qualities that make him such a pleasant young person to be around.
“He is determined, focussed and most of all resilient.
“He has thoroughly enjoyed spending one day a week coming to the college. We are extremely proud of Keelan, and his achievement will be an inspiration to other young people. “
CCEA’s Chief Executive, Justin Edwards congratulated all of the learners who received awards saying:
“We are delighted to be hosting, for the first time, an inclusive award ceremony, celebrating our Technical Learners of the Year, alongside our top students in GCSE and GCE qualifications.
“This is the largest award ceremony CCEA has organised and we feel privileged that learners, families, schools and colleges have joined us tonight in making it such a memorable occasion.
“Well done to all of the winners and to those who have played a part in their success.”