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UEL sport therapy student Karl Anthony shortlisted for Festival of Learning award 

O2 arena

UEL student Karl Anthony persevered after a motorcycle injury left him severely injured

Karl Anthony, sports therapy student at the University of East London (UEL), has been shortlisted for the Festival of Learning awards.
A motorcycle accident left Karl potentially unable to walk unaided for the rest of his life. His dramatic rehabilitation to full mobility led him to become a qualified personal trainer. During his work with clients, he realised his own experience could help others with their recovery. 
Karl said, “Following my accident I was told I would never return to an active lifestyle. This motivated me to learn about rehabilitation, strength and conditioning so that I could go further than the limitations placed on me. My goal is to create a new system of rehabilitation that blends the principles of strength and conditioning, and sports therapy to ensure that nobody else is told they won’t ever be able to do the things they enjoy again.”
The Festival of Learning is the biggest celebration of lifelong learning in England. Its mission is to highlight the benefits of learning, celebrate the achievements of adults who have used learning to transform their lives and to encourage everyone to embrace lifelong learning. Award winners were announced at a ceremony on 2 July.
Karl completed the 10-week New Beginnings course at UEL to help start his journey. New Beginnings is a unique course that offers access to some degree programmes for mature students and those without formal qualifications. Karl received support to help him succeed including help with academic writing and IT.
At the beginning of Karl’s 10-week course he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety and found being in large groups very stressful. Since completing the course Karl has become more confident and truly believes in his ability to succeed.  

He said, “I am now coping very well and this has also improved my interpersonal relationships outside of university. I also worried that I wasn’t smart enough as I have been out of education for a long time and have dyslexia which makes producing written work difficult. By developing coping strategies to work around the dyslexia, I have received good grades.”