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Designs on medal success

MULTI-TALENTED: Jordan Andrew is studying art and design, with ambitions to become a professional

STUDYING FOR an extended Diploma in Art and Design Jordan Andrew has come in for extra praise following his gold medals in the long jump and 400m at the London Indoor Special Olympics Athletics Championships.

Since accepting his medals from ex Pusscycat Doll Nicole Sherzinger last October Andrew, 19, describes himself as ‘determined and motivated’ as he pursues his ultimate dream of becoming a professional artist/designer and an elite athlete.

Firmly on his way to achieving both Andrews textile teacher told the Voice it was becoming more and more obvious with each day that the school had unearthed a gem.

Sara Nowell said: “Jordan is clearly a talented textile design student, who works exceptionally hard, often going above the expected requirements to ensure his level of perfection is executed in his work.

“Recently Jordan has been selected to take part in FAD’s (Fashion Awareness Direct) Fashion Futures 2017 and is refining his design skills to hopefully be selected and gain a place in the charities final competition.

“He is a diligent and committed young man who is growing in confidence both socially and academically. It is a pleasure to teach Jordan and I wish him continual success for his future which I have no doubt he will achieve.”

Following his success at the Special Olympics London Indoor Athletics Championships Andrew, who has autism, has now been elected to be part of the British Athletics Parallel Success Talent Pathway, for future international representation. He will also be participating on behalf of INAS (International Sports Federation for Persons with Intellectual Disability) and will participate in the International Athletics competition 2018 and Paralympic Championships Tokyo 2020.

Beth Harris, Sports Academy Manager at NewVIc said: “We’re extremely proud of how Jordan has progressed in his athletics over the past couple of years, and his dedication is really paying off.  It’s fantastic that he’s been identified to be part of the British Athletics Talent pathway and we’re really looking forward to seeing him compete at international level in the coming years.”

Looking back on his journey to date, Andrew said things haven’t always been plain sailing but he was looking forward getting even better in both fashion and sport.

“I chose this course due to my parents’ encouragement, they have always driven me to try out new things, they fill me up with confidence to always work hard, encourage me to never give up and inspire me to get better. Without their encouragement I would not have got this far in life, to do the things that other students are doing.

“Before I started NewVIc they were putting on Art and Design taster days for students to get an idea of what the course is like. After I got to know about the course I decided to do their vocational courses because they offered many opportunities that I can pursue, plus there were certain aspects of the course that appealed to me too.

“There were hurdles and challenges that I came across like, for example having trouble meeting deadlines, organising workload in sessions and managing my time constructively,” Andrew said candidly.

“When I reflect back to the previous years, having those difficulties has increased my confidence by learning from my mistakes to be able to conquer my weaknesses and problems successfully.

“I do Athletics training on Mondays and also Hockey training on Fridays as well. I like to have a balance between different sports because they both improve your speed, endurance, physical strength and power, agility, capacity and flexibility. I make sure that when it comes to any occurring athletics competitions, I get plenty of practice and training so I am fully prepared to reach my full potential.”

Looking forward to the next few years Andrew offered other students with similar dreams to himself this advice: “All I can say is don't let anything stop you from what you want to do, never give up, have lots of fun, take risks in trying out new experiences, be confident about yourself and always put in as much effort as you can into all your studies.

“The next step for me is to get the best grades in my exams and to make more future successes.’

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