Determined student Nicole Royles overcame a multitude if health issues to prove she is a first-class scholar.
During the course of her degree studies the 23-year-old underwent heart surgery and numerous ear operations while studying at the University of Central Lancashire.
The Chorley student’s time at the Preston university has been blighted by heart and ear operations with frequent hospital admissions but that didn’t stop her from continuing to study for her counselling and psychotherapy degree.
The former Southlands High School and Blackburn College student passed with flying colours and said: “Throughout my time at university I have undergone heart surgery and many ear operations.”
She added: “Only in January this year I was in hospital for heart surgery whilst researching for my dissertation.”
Nicole added: “I have also been admitted to hospital on many occasions due to fainting so having to juggle university assignments and lectures, along with a part-time job, was extremely difficult at times.
“It resulted in me even contemplating quitting and giving up but with the help of my tutors, and the excellent support staff, I managed to do it.”
She chose counselling and psychotherapy because of her own personal experience in her younger life.
Nicole said: “Having gone through a difficult childhood due to many things, and being unsupported by local services, I wanted to be able to make a difference and help and support others in any way that I could, and this course provided a great platform for me to be able to that.
“It also taught me a lot about myself, which enabled me to gain in confidence and knowledge.”.
Nicole, who has been supported through her three year course by her fiancé Scott Grime, has successfully gained an internship position as a Student Mentor Coordinator and is hopeful of studying for a Masters at some point in the near future.
She graduated with a first class BA honours degree in counselling and psychotherapy studies, something which is still sinking in.
She added: “I feel unbelievably proud and I am still in shock with how far I have come, especially as I was told by lots of people that I couldn’t do it and that I was wasting my time.”
Nicole was one of more than 4,000 students who graduated in front of family and friends at Preston’s Guild Hall at a host of ceremonious across the week.