Paulina is this year’s outstanding learner

Published: Tuesday 9th October 18

Paulina Zemke has been named Learner of the Year at the Wandsworth Lifelong Learning Awards 2018.

The winners

The awards recognise the borough's highest achieving adult learners – rewarding them for their commitment and success over the past 12 months.

Paulina started her learning journey with short work based courses, improving skills in English, Maths and ICT.  She has achieved her level 2 apprenticeship in Business Administration and has now progressed to level 3.  Paulina has also achieved full-time employment in Wandsworth Council’s planning department.

She said: “I am a single mum so it would be very difficult for me to attend any courses but Life Long Learning’s flexibility has opened a new door for me. My daughter Nicole is five years old now, and thanks to the qualifications I am gaining I am able to help her more as well.

“Soon I will be offered a permanent contract  thanks to Lifelong Learning and a wonderful team of tutors working in the Tooting Professional Centre. To cut a long story short, I’m greatly appreciating the opportunities which Lifelong Learning gave me and I will continue to develop myself thanks to them.”

George Turner, co founder of Carneys, a community organisation, reaching out to young people and adults in the Battersea area, received an award for outstanding contribution to learning in Wandsworth.

Cllr O'Broin, Paula Zemke and George Turner

At a ceremony in Wandsworth’s Civic Suite more than 150 local people were presented with certificates of achievement in subjects including business administration, health and social care, teaching, information technology, numeracy, literacy and English for speakers of other languages.  Entertainment was provided by the Wandsworth Community Choir.

Rory O’Broin, the council’s employment and skills spokesman, said: “Congratulations to Paulina and everyone who has won an award tonight.  Each year Wandsworth Council’s Lifelong Learning team help thousands of people into apprenticeships, work experience and training giving people the skills they need to get into work.

“They also offer dozens of adult learning and family learning courses that you can take just because you want to learn something new, so I would encourage anyone looking for a new challenge to see what they have to offer.”

Other learners of the year included: 

  • Kayode Adeniran – Deaf First
  • Rita Achaempong – South Thames College
  • Mary Bone – Wandsworth Apprenticeships
  • Pablo Jose Diaz Gurriaran – Wandsworth Apprenticeships
  • Pareice Hassan-Wright – Wandsworth Apprenticeships
  • Paulina Zemke – Wandsworth Apprenticeships
  • Candice Blair – Wandsworth Traineeships

Tutors of the year included:

  • Ursula Skarbek – Baked Bean Company
  • Keane Willats – Deaf First
  • Manuela Plank – South Thames College
  • Samantha Rob-McKinley  - Wandsworth Apprenticeships

Other winners on the night included:

  • Souad Salemkour – Aspire Centre
  • Leanne Frasier – Apprenticeships
  • Andrea Brown – Employability Programme
  • Paulina Zemke – Functional Skills
  • Alejandro Piedrahita – Functional Skills
  • Ryan Roche – Traineeships

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For more information on Lifelong Learning visit

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