70 students from across Greater Manchester graduated with higher-level qualifications.
The ceremony, held at Rochdale Town Hall, awarded students studying for higher level qualifications in: Electrical Engineering, Leadership & Management, Education & Training, Early Years, Animal Management, Sports Development and Games Development.
Leaders from the community and local education providers also joined in the celebration. Amongst these were Labour MP for Heywood & Middleton – Liz McInnes, Mayor of Rochdale – Mohammed Zaman, Assistant Principal of Hollingworth Academy – Colin Williamson and Dean of Research at the University of Salford – Professor Karl Dayson.
There was also a first for the Middleton and Rochdale-based College, as Nazir Afzal OBE performed his first official role for the College since taking over from Robert Clegg OBE as Chair of the Corporation.
Speaking to attendees, Nazir Afzal OBE welcomed guests in his first public speech for Hopwood Hall College:
“It is a privilege to welcome you all as the new chair of Hopwood Hall College. In my time here so far I can already see that this is an institution that is very established and cares deeply about its learners.
“Seeing so many people from the local area study at this level to better themselves is inspiring and I wish you all the best with your futures.
“If I could offer one bit of advice to you all it would be this, success is not the result of spontaneous combustion; you must set yourself on fire. Look for your best and realise that the only ceiling you have is the one you set in your own mind.”