College friends set up sign language group to help fellow student

Left to Right – Jay Robe and Nathan Creber.

Left to Right – Jay Robe and Nathan Creber.

Two Horticulture students, Nathan Creber and Amberlea McNaught, decided to set up the British Sign Language (BSL) society to help one of their fellow students, Jay Robe.

During the College’s two-week induction, the students noticed Jay on his own with his Sign Language Tutor and they were unable to communicate with him. The students decided to learn basic British Sign Language to be able to communicate with Jay in class and group conversations, as well as include him in their friendship circle.

The British Sign Language society started with 15 members initially and rapidly grew to 32 members within the staff and student community and it continues to grow. This has increased Jay’s confidence and he is happier in class and fully supports the society.

Nathan said: “The British Sign Language society is something I enjoy, and it has made it a lot easier to communicate with Jay. I’m proud to have set up the society, I have grown in confidence and developed both my public speaking and leadership skills.”

“This is a team with a common interest and is everything Barnsley College is trying to achieve.”

Beverley Jones, Senior Tutorial Team Leader at Barnsley College, added: “This is a marvelous and heart-warming story, where students want to get involved in making someone else’s life a little easier.

“The students will now have access to free British Sign Language training and support throughout. The society has a great mixture of students with different learning abilities and this is a great thing as it means anyone can learn BSL.

“We are currently working and learning during a difficult time, and it is hard to form friendships and complete enrichment activities, but this is a team with a common interest and is everything Barnsley College is trying to achieve.”

Barnsley College provide an Additional Learning Support service to students studying at all levels and aims to help them achieve success in their education and career. The team of experienced learning support workers support students with a range of learning disabilities across the College.

Last updated: 1st April 2021