TWO Carmarthenshire students have signed up to help encourage young people to study their university courses in Welsh.
Students Dylan Nicholas from Llangunnor and Poppy Evans from Pontyates are among 14 Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol ambassadors across seven universities in Wales, whose role it is to persuade school pupils to take part of their studies at university in Welsh.
Poppy attended Cwmgwili school and then Abernant school in Carmarthenshire where she learned to speak Welsh. Poppy is from an English speaking home but made the decision herself to join Bro Myrddin S chool where she continued her studies attaining two A-levels and two AS-levels. Poppy then went on to attend Aberwystwyth University where she is studying law.
Her father, Alan Evans, told The Herald: “Within a short space of time of being at University she was elected as student representative on the National Union of Students and has recently become an ambassador for Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol. ”
He added: “As well as university studies and work experience with a Carmarthenshire based solicitors firm Poppy is also helping Plaid Cymru with their election campaign for the Assembly elections in 2017, and we are immensely proud of her achievements to date!”
Dylan is currently studying Business and Management at Cardiff Metropolitan University, and is delighted to have been given the opportunity to study in Welsh, he said: “I have received my education through Welsh since primary school level therefore studying through the language at higher education level was a natural choice for me.
“There are many advantages when studying through Welsh such as improved job prospects because two languages offer twice the opportunities.”
Both Poppy and Dylan will represent the Coleg Cymraeg alongside fellow ambassadors at school visits, UCAS fairs and Eisteddfodau as well as recording their experiences in a newly-created blog. Poppy told The Herald about the application process: “Coleg Cymraeg hold an application process every year for those who wish to become Ambassadors on their behalf. The application process questions the importance of the Welsh language to you and your ability to promote it effectively in Higher Education. ”
She added: “As a fluent Welsh speaker who underestimated the benefits of Coleg Cymraeg and studying through the Welsh language I missed an opportunity to receive an excellent scholarship. I quickly learned from my mistake and became determined not to let anyone else do the same. Upon hearing of the opening for a Coleg Cymraeg Ambassador I applied with the intention of encouraging students to view their ability to speak Welsh as a skill which can enhance your entire u niversity experience.
“I will be attending a UCAS fair on the March 22 at University of Trinity St David, Carmarthen.” She added: “These events are an excellent opportunity for school pupils to query the Coleg and receive all the information about the excellent work that they do. “If you are a Welsh speaker, either learning or fluent then show it off! It’s something to be proud of.”
Information about the schools and events the ambassadors will be attending and the Coleg is available at www.colegcymraeg.ac.uk