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Passionate volunteer celebrates his success at graduation

24 July 2015

Rosie Lulat

Student Volunteer of the Year student graduates

A Preston student is celebrating his university successes both in, and outside, the lecture theatre whilst studying at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

Mark Lee, who studied a three-year Community and Social Care: Policy and Practice course whilst maintaining his part-time job in residential care, made the most of his time at University and his volunteering opportunities.

The 31-year-old has worked with two different youth groups, in Kingsfold and Clayton Brook, as part of the structured work experience through his course. During his time in Kingsfold, Mark has set up a 16plus football team and is currently working towards obtaining funding for two youth and community and support workers as part of a three year social enterprise project for the community.

Mark has previously been awarded the Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence for Volunteering and the Students’ Union’s Student Volunteer of the Year Award in 2014.

“I gained so much from the Future Leader’s programme, I feel it hugely enhanced and informed my actions.”

In his first year at UCLan Mark became a course representative and set up a student-led networking event, with a fellow course rep, called IN TOUCH. This event invited industry experts and guest speakers into the University. Although he no longer plays a part in this, the IN TOUCH event still runs every year.

Mark, who was the former Chair of the UCLan Student Council, has also recently taken part in the UCLan Future Leaders programme, which a competitive process that picks 40 students from the University and trains them in leadership and management.

He said: “I gained so much from the Future Leader’s programme, I feel it hugely enhanced and informed my actions. As I was also volunteering I could put what I was learning into practice and it really complemented my degree.”

Mark will continue his UCLan studies as he plans to start a master’s degree in social policy and hopes to go on to study a PhD which will be informed by the combination of his undergraduate, postgraduate and Future Leaders knowledge.