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April 28, 2006

Deaf Student From Mombasa Is 'UK Learner Of The Year'

From: Coastweek - Mombasa,Kenya - Apr 28, 2006


Coastweek - - A student from Leicester is one of this year's top vocational achievers, receiving one of the highest honours bestowed by City and Guilds, the UK's leading awarding body for work-related qualifications.

Suhail Pasta was crowned 'Further Education Sector Learner of the Year' at the Lion Awards ceremony on 3rd April 2006 by celebrity chef Gary Rhodes at a ceremony in London.

Before this, on March 03, 2006, he was awarded one of the top 100 Gold medals of Excellence in Derby, UK.

The 21-year-old student, son of Mr. and Mrs. Sikander Pasta (A. K. Abdulgani Ltd), originally from Kenya, overcame severe hearing impairment and speech difficulties to achieve out-standing results in his advanced IT courses.

In the last three years he gained distinctions in all levels of his qualification, and successfully enrolled on a Business course at Leicester College.

According to Pasta's nominator, Fehmida Kapasi, lecturer at Leicester College, U.K.:

"Suhail is one of the most dedicated lifelong learners I have come across in Further Education."

Despite his language barriers, Pasta has adapted extremely well to his College surroundings and is determined to work in a computer-friendly environment such as the retail industry.

Further down the line, his plans are to return back here to Mombasa and use his skills in his father's family business.

On hearing he secured the title, thrilled Pasta said: "Winning this award has been the biggest achievement of my life.

"The joy that I feel is very difficult to describe.

"I feel on top of the world."

"Communication has been the biggest challenge of my life due to being deaf.

"My biggest motivation has been the encouragement from my parents and uncle, Samad Panjwani, as well as my own personal aim to make something of my life."

Presenting the awards, ambassador of British cuisine Gary Rhodes congratulated Pasta for his perseverance and commitment to learning:

"Suhail has shown to himself and to the rest of the UK that when one puts his or her mind to something, anything is possible.

"He is an inspiration.

"I would like to congratulate Suhail and wish him every success for the future."

Each year, City and Guilds selects around 100 people from over three quarters of a million eligible candidates to win Medals for Excellence.

Only eight of these winners are presented with Lion Awards at the Oscar-style ceremony in London to celebrate the very best of who have gone the extra mile to complete their qualification.

Copyright © 2006 Coastweek Newspapers Ltd. All rights reserved.