New South Shields company aims to help students

Students are set to be given a helping hand as they move through the higher stages of education and into employment.
KangaRook's Carol Matthews.KangaRook's Carol Matthews.
KangaRook's Carol Matthews.

Former academic Carol Matthews has launched KangaRook Learning and Development in a bid to help learners adapt to their new life.

The idea was dreamed up and made a reality after Carol delved further into some of the issues students faced at the beginning and end of their time at university.

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KangaRook aims to provide academic skills training to current and prospective university students across the North East.

Through its own Uni Survival Guide it aims to help students to bridge the gap between school and university.

Carol, who has based KangaRook at South Tyneside Business Works in Henry Robson Way, South Shields, said: “When I first started teaching in 2005, I noticed for many of my ‘freshers’ or first years, starting uni was a daunting experience for them with around a third dropping out after the first assignment.

“I found the secret to surviving the first year at uni is to know what to expect.

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“Not many students are really aware, for example, that they will need to adapt very quickly to become an independent learner.

“A lot of students also didn’t know where to go to, to ask for help and support.

“It’s about trying to help students make the transition as easy as possible.”

Carol hopes the survival guides it will help to show students what to expect from the first day to Induction, to tackling their first assignments, feedback and beyond.

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She will also be launching a personal branding toolkit aimed at helping graduates to identify their personal strengths and ambitions.

It will also help those looking for work with tips and advice on how best to present themselves to employers and colleagues.

Carol, who has returned to the North East from Australia, said: “When I moved back to the North East I was looking for work, but I also wanted to do something which would help and support students, as this is not just a problem in one part of the country, it is a common theme throughout the country.

“KangaRook is giving me the opportunity to address an area that I had been concerned about.”