Clare Elmi-Glennan is an Outreach Tutor and Senior Lecturer at Cardiff Metropolitan University.
She says, “Tutoring quite simply means everything to me. On the surface I teach Psychology and keep my learners engaged – but learning and teaching is so much more.” Clare has led pioneering work to widen access to university and to get adults on a pathway to higher education through the Community to Campus programme.
Clare went back to adult learning to take an A level and Maths GCSE. At the age of 37 she knew she wanted to teach, she says, “I burnt the midnight oil, juggled work commitments and study whilst raising five children and achieved a first-class degree. After my degree, I was given the opportunity to engage with a PhD at Cardiff Met – with the support of my wonderful family and amazing supervisory team, I completed my PhD in 2013.”
The coronavirus pandemic has caused upheaval in learning and teaching – Clare was particularly mindful that community learners might be more likely to suffer the impact. Determined not to let those learners down, she quickly embraced new technologies to maintain community teaching. She took part in Adult Learners’ Week in September 2020 and delivered a live stream lecture for students thinking about coming back to education. Clare continued to deliver an iteration of her psychology module, online, to community adult learners. In addition, she contributed an Introduction to Psychology module for the Welsh Government Continuation of Learning project plan. This initiative helped Year 13 students unable to proceed with their learning due to Covid-19.
“My experience has made me passionate about reaching out to more people in our communities, there is so much untapped potential out there. For many reasons people miss out at school or simply do not enjoy this time, but everyone deserve second, third … as many chances as it takes in life. My message to adult learners is straightforward – no matter what has happened in the past, you can be responsible for carving out your future!”