EastEnders star visits Redbridge College to honour students at awards do

Redbridge College students awards ceremony

Redbridge College students awards ceremony - Credit: Vicky Hambly

Students took centre stage last week when they experienced the red carpet at their annual awards ceremony.

More than 70 high achievers from Redbridge College, Barley Lane, Chadwell Heath, were honoured following nominations from their teachers.

EastEnders star, Danny Dyer, who attended as a guest speaker.

He said: “The facilities at Redbridge College are fantastic and I was honoured to be asked to present awards to such amazing and truly deserving students.”

Hollywood star Winston Ellis, who featured in the hit film Pirates of the Caribbean and is currently working on a film with Idris Elba, also attended as a guest speaker.

He said: “Wow, what an evening. It really was a privilege to be part of the celebrations and meeting all the wonderful students at Redbridge College.”

The event was held in the college’s new 250-seat box theatre which combines a dance studio, rehearsal facility, conference hall and cinema.

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Top accolade of the night went to Olga Barbasova, who received the coveted Student of the Year prize for achievement and commitment to her studies.

Olga started at Redbridge College as an English Speaker of Other Languages (ESOL) student having spent more than 20 years out of education to raise a family.

After successfully completing her Access course, the mother has been offered a university place where she will pursue her dream of becoming a nurse.

Other notable winners included Morgan Harold who won a performing excellence award.

“Morgan has learning difficulties but does not let this affect her socially or professionally,” said a college spokeswoman.

“She has made an amazingly smooth transition from compass to performing arts. Flourishing and blossoming in more ways than some of the students on more advanced courses.”

This year’s ceremony also celebrated Jack Petchey award winners - a programme that acknowledges four students each month throughout the academic year who have overcome adversity and inspired others.

The grand finale of the evening saw students perform rousing scenes from their recent Cabaret Cabaret.

Principal, Gerry McDonald said: “The evening was fantastic. I was so impressed by the calibre of our winners and their achievements.”