College celebrates gold award for former art student

Elizabeth Price and Olivia Cummins
Elizabeth Price and Olivia Cummins

Staff and students at Luton Sixth Form College are celebrating after alumna Elizabeth Price received the Association of Colleges Gold Award.

Elizabeth was nominated by her college for the award which she received at the House of Commons.

The award celebrates the success of further education alumni and acknowledges the vital role that colleges play in building the foundation of successful careers.

Staff and students from Luton Sixth Form College attended the star-studded awards ceremony in London on Wednesday, June 10 where Elizabeth was presented with her AoC Gold Award by Lord Willis of Knaresborough.

She said: “It’s great to have won this award and I had a very happy time at Luton Sixth Form College. It helped me achieve the things I wanted to do. It feels great that this award acknowledged the contribution of Ffurther Education colleges. It made a massive difference to me.”

Studying art at Luton Sixth Form College in the mid-1980s set Elizabeth on the path to her career as an artist, and her future award success. After leaving school she moved on to study at the Ruskin School of Drawing & Fine Art in Oxford, and then to the Royal College of Art in London. In 1998 she completed a PhD in Fine Art at the University of Leeds. She won the Turner Prize in 2012 with a trilogy of video installations, which includes archives of images, text, news footage and music.

Alongside, Elizabeth, Luton Sixth Form College nominated Olivia Cummins as a student showing promise in a similar field to receive the Association of Colleges ‘Future Star’ accolade. Olivia, 18, is studying BTEC Level 3 qualifications in Art & Design and Graphic

Design and hopes to go on to the University of Lincoln to do Graphic Design. Her long term hope it to develop a career in graphic design or possibly teaching.

Olivia also attended the award ceremony at the House of Commons where she had the opportunity to meet Elizabeth to find out more about what it takes to carve out a successful career and the role that their college played.

Olivia said: “I am inspired by Elizabeth Price because of her achievements. It is inspirational to see someone from my college who has gone on to succeed so well in what they devote so much time to, and share a similar passion to me.”

Chris Nicholls, Principal at Luton Sixth Form College, said: “It was a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the outstanding achievements of an ex-student and it also allowed us to recognise the importance of creative arts in the curriculum and the unique contribution they can make in young people’s lives.”

For more information about AoC Gold Awards visit www.aoc.co.uk/gold