Name: Angela Linghorn-Baker
Lives in: Essex
Currently studying: CIPD Level 5 Award in Employment Law
Why ICS? Interest-free monthly payments and the opportunity to study one individual CIPD module at a time.
Angela has worked in the public sector for 18 years, serving numerous roles in facilities management, contracts, human resources and policy. Throughout her career, she's always taken a particular interest in both law and HR.
For a long time, Angela's dream was to become a solicitor. However, the high fees for law programmes and the demanding workload made her reconsider. She would have to quit her job to study full time, and even with a degree, it would still take while to work up to the salary she's earning after nearly two decades with the same employer.
Disappointed, but not discouraged, she began looking for alternative ways to advance her career and fuel her interest in law.
"I really enjoyed it"
For Angela, giving up on the idea of a law degree actually led her to new paths she may not have otherwise discovered. It was an unexpected silver lining.
"I started instead to find opportunities within my work place where I could get exposure to the law and HR sides of the business, and found that I really enjoyed it," she tells us.
"I find working with different diversities really interesting, and ensuring HR policy adds value across the board."
"I couldn't believe my luck"
Angela's new dream is to become an HR Director and potentially move to the private sector someday. A colleague suggested she look into CIPD qualifications as a way to advance her career.
"I found ICS during an Internet search and couldn't believe my luck when I saw that they offered individual modules," she says.
"This allowed me to do one at a time, in my own timeframe and in the order that I wished to do them in. What's more, the interest-free monthly payments meant that I could easily afford it. I started with Employment Law, which meant I had the best of both worlds in terms of my interests."
"It has helped me apply the law in an HR perspective"
Despite her busy work schedule, Angela still manages to find time for her CIPD coursework. She studies on weekends and on the train during her commute into London. She's also been able to negotiate time off from work to study.
In many ways, studying whilst working full-time has been beneficial for Angela. What she does at work often feeds into what she's learning on the course, and she's already noticed how the course has influenced her performance at work.
"I have enjoyed relating what I have learnt to my day job," she tells us. "It has helped me apply the law in an HR perspective, and also to understand individual needs of different people."
When asked what advice she would give to other students enrolled in distance learning courses, Angela says to simply "persevere". Even if it's difficult in the beginning, stick it out and it will get easier.
"It seems daunting at first on top of your day job," she admits. "But once you get into it you realise the course and work aren't exclusive-you gain great insight from work to help with your studies, and vice versa."
"With the help of ICS, my dreams became a reality"
Angela's decision to earn a formal CIPD qualification has already paid off. She was recently promoted to the role of HR Policy Manager.
"Even just putting on my CV that I was currently studying has helped me to gain credibility in the HR field, and as such I have achieved a great HR position.
"This was a dream that I thought I had to give up on, but with the help of ICS Learm and their tailored services, my dreams became a reality."
Watch out for more 'ICS Real Stories' right here on our blog. In the meantime, find out more about the CIPD Level 5 Employment Law course that helped Angela advance her career