Students have true X-Factor

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X-Factor finalist Jamie Archer gave some celebrity sparkle to Tresham College’s annual awards, but the winners were the real stars.

The college – which has campuses in Kettering, Corby and Wellingborough – recognised the achievements of students, many of who have overcome adversity, at a glittering ceremony on Friday.

X-Factor 2009 finalist Jamie Archer, nicknamed Jamie Afro for his large hairstyle, handed out the awards and performed two songs, including his trademark Kings of Leon cover Sex on Fire.

Fan Leigh Whitney, 18, of Corby, who scooped Tresham Youth Training Learner of the Year, said: “It was amazing to meet him.”

Leigh, who is now on a Prince’s Trust programme, completed the youth training course despite being full-time carer for her younger brother and sister since her mother died three years ago.

She takes them to school before heading to college each day.

Leigh said: “I was overwhelmed to win something.”

In all 44 students received awards, ranging from Esther Worseley, who scooped a Skills for Living and Learning Award for learning to live independently despite learning and communication difficulties, to students rewarded for achievements in IT, engineering, construction and motorsport.

Mr Archer told the winners: “To come here and see you lot is pretty amazing.

“It shows what you can achieve if you don’t give up.”

Stuart Wesselby, principal of Tresham College, said: “All of the 44 winners and their families should be very proud of what they have accomplished at college and I wish them, together with all of the learners completing their course at Tresham this year, all the best for their careers or further study.”