Mum is the word for graduating duo

Celebration: Mums Danielle O'Neill and, below, Tara Miller with baby Elsie-Rose
Celebration: Mums Danielle O'Neill and, below, Tara Miller with baby Elsie-Rose
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Mum is definitely the word for these new graduates.

Both Danielle O’Neill and Tara Miller gave birth just weeks before graduating.

Tara Miller with baby Elsie-Rose

Tara Miller with baby Elsie-Rose

Danielle, who lives in Kennett Drive, Leyland, gave birth to Max just five weeks before receiving her 2:2 degree at a special ceremony at King George’s Hall in Blackburn.

The 21-year-old studied for a BA (Hons) in graphic communication at the University Centre at Blackburn College.

Her two classmates Tara Miller, from Chorley, and Katrina Meehan, of Rossendale, both became pregnant during their studies as well.

Tara’s baby, Elsie-Rose, was born a month before Katrina’s and Danielle’s baby, Max, was born just days apart from Katrina’s baby, Rileigh. The mums had joked that there must have been something in the water.

Danielle had already completed a two year BTEC National Diploma in Art and Design (Graphic Design) at Runshaw College in Leyland before starting her degree.

She said: “I found out I was pregnant in January and it was a bit of a surprise but the tutors and staff were all really helpful and supportive. I had a few times when I felt fed up and tired but they really pushed me to keep going.The ceremony was fantastic to be part of and my mum, dad and boyfriend came along too.”

Despite being a new mum, Danielle is managing to work part-time designing packaging tape at Custom Tape in Leyland.

Tara Miller, 23, from Blackburn Road, Higher Wheelton, near Chorley, gave birth to Elsie-Rose just six weeks before she collected her degree. She did a two-year BTEC National Diploma in Graphic Design at Blackburn College before moving on to do a degree.

Tara said: “It was a bit of a surprise when I found out I was pregnant on New Year’s Eve last year, but the tutors and staff were all really helpful and supportive.

“I still completed my degree and managed to get enough sleep, the hardest bit was carrying all the stuff I needed for college.”