Determined trainee named student of year

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A trainee assistant building site manager in Pontefract has overcome a number of obstacles to be named Barratt Homes’ student of the year.

Darren Sharples, who works at the company’s Oaklands development, has been recognised after studying a part-time foundation degree with Sheffield Hallam University.

Mr Sharples, 42, lost his father in August and is in the top 5 per cent of those most severely affected by dyslexia. Despite the hurdles, Mr Sharples achieved the highest grades from within his cohort.

He said “I’m delighted to have been recognised as Barratt’s student of the year. Taking on such an intensive course with profound dyslexia, whilst ensuring a loved one is as comfortable as possible following a terminal diagnosis, was extremely difficult but I hope that my story will show that, with determination and hard work, almost any challenge can be overcome.”

Darren Johnson, construction director, said: “We’re delighted with Darren’s success – he is driven, motivated and excels at what he does. This award recognises an employee who has succeeded the most on our training programme with Sheffield Hallam University and Darren’s accomplishments are, simply put, incredible.”