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Emma Cartwright

After initially training as a nurse, Emma later set up a wedding and celebration cake business which achieved a turnover of £100,000 by its fifth year. However, after giving birth to her third child in 2005, Emma found that her successful business was taking up too much of her time and attention.

The family relocated – allowing Emma to downsize her business – and she began to volunteer in her children’s schools and work as a Scout Leader, leading to another career option presenting itself.

Emma explains: “I found myself wondering how I could use my business and baking experience in a new role, and I decided that teaching food technology in a secondary school would be the way forward.”

After looking at a number of different teacher training providers in the area, Emma admits that the ‘sense of enthusiasm and support’ she received from those at the University persuaded her that Worcester was the ideal place to study.

She also says that, although life as a mature student with a family was difficult at times, she has enjoyed her return to education.

“Balancing family life and study was a challenge,” she explains. “I knew I had to get as much of the work as possible done at school, because the only other time I had was after all the jobs at home were finished, and as these included looking after two horses, 36 ducks, nine chickens, two dogs and two cats, by that time I needed my sleep!

“This did concern me, as I thought I might not get the full experience or meet the requirements, but my placements were carefully chosen by my University tutors, and my husband, parents and mother and father in law were all very supportive with childcare, allowing me time to complete assignments.”

She adds: “I have made so many new friends and the year has been a very rewarding experience – I feel a huge sense of achievement.”

Following the completion of her studies, Emma has secured a job at Malvern St James, an independent girls’ boarding school, teaching Food Technology to Key Stage Three, GCSE and A-Level students.