Here at Highbury, we know that there is no better advocate for our world-class education and training than that of our past and existing students.

Whatever you goals, big or small, we are dedicated in supporting you to achieve your dreams and take that next step to become the person you aspire to be.

It is this ethos that has inspired this year's ‘Now I Am’ campaign. An opportunity to celebrate just some of the many students who have worked with Highbury to make the most of themselves, demonstrate success and achieve their goals.

We hope that by listening to some of what these exceptional individuals have to say about their experience, we will inspire you to start your own journey, and choose Highbury to help you reach your destination.

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Laura Thomson – Motoring Writer

Laura Thomson

Motoring Writer

Journalism Courses

Find out more about our Journalism and NCTJ accredited courses…

Laura Thomson, 21, from Southsea, signed up for Highbury College’s One Year Diploma in Journalism – and is now following her dream of becoming a motoring writer.

For a year she gained work experience at The News, Portsmouth, while studying towards her Level Three qualification.

Laura says it was that real-world work experience, mixed with high quality teaching at Highbury, that helped her land her big break in journalism. She is now travelling the world as a motoring journalist with Baize Group, a Gosport-based automotive media company, covering the latest new car launches.

I’ve always loved cars and motorbikes and had an ambition to make a living writing about them one day.
So when I saw Highbury College’s One Year Diploma in Journalism I applied and the rest is history. Working at The News helped build up my portfolio and improve my writing skills. The course and the work experience was a major factor in getting the job.

Highbury College has run NCTJ journalism courses for more than 50 years, producing a series of highly successful journalists and media professionals.

We currently offer a One Year NCTJ-accredited Diploma in Journalism in partnership with The News, Portsmouth and a One Year Diploma in Journalism in partnership with the Southern Daily Echo in Southampton. We also offer a fast-track 20-week NCTJ-accredited Diploma in Journalism based full-time at Highbury. To apply, go to

After completing my Apprenticeship, I became Junior Developer, helping to create bespoke and custom-order websites, website applications and system applications for our clients. I love it!

Studied: Apprentice IT & Telecoms with Dynamics Consultants

Find out more about our Computing courses

Ed Leeman – IT Developer

Ed Leeman

IT Developer

Kamila Mohammadi – Teaching Assistant

Kamila Mohammadi

Teaching Assistant

Highbury College is amazing. It changed my life because at first I couldn’t even speak English.

Studied: ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages)

Find out more about our Language courses

I applied for an Apprenticeship at Airbus Defence & Space in Portsmouth three times and the third time I got it – thanks to the Highbury team who were really helpful and supportive.

Studied: Level 3 Extended Diploma in Engineering

Find out more about our Engineering courses

Matt Knibbs – Airbus Apprentice

Matt Knibbs

Airbus Apprentice

Clare Smyth – Michelin Starred Chef

Clare Smyth

Michelin Starred Chef

I’m incredibly proud of Clare and what she has achieved. She is an amazingly talented chef.

– Gordan Ramsay

Studied: Professional Cookery

Find out more about our Catering courses

I always wanted to be a Mechanical Engineer, like my Dad back in Fiji…
Now I am on a Mechanical Engineering degree course at Portsmouth University.

Studied: BTEC Level 3 in Electrical Electronics

Find out more about our Electrical courses

Ketesi Wagadau Buke – Engineering Student

Ketesi Wagadau Buke

Engineering Student

Nicole Marcus – Emirates Cabin Crew

Nicole Marcus

Emirates Cabin Crew

Leisure, Travel & Tourism

Find out more about our Leisure, Travel and Tourism courses…

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Since I graduated from college I was successful in obtaining a job with Emirates which I started in October last year. The course helped me to be more confident in myself and also to have an idea about the Aviation Industry.
I am now living in Dubai and progressing through my career as a flight attendant. It was a big step for me moving here, and trying to accommodate myself in a new country with another culture and religion, in the beginning I was a bit nervous but excited also.
I love flying, I love all destinations, I don't know which one to choose, every destination gives me a different view of life, a different feeling. I intend to start a charity event for children from Zanzibar and Nigeria. To date I have been on  flights with exotic destinations such as Mauritius, Bali, Phuket but also Nigeria, Africa, Asia.

Studied: Diploma in Airline Operations

Qualifying at Highbury opened so many doors and helped me progress from local to national radio.

Studied: NCTJ Diploma in Journalism

Find out more about our Media courses

Matt Graveling – BBC TV Reporter

Matt Graveling

BBC TV Reporter