Samantha Foulkes tells us how she combines working part-time and being a full-on mum while studying part-time with NCT.

Tell us a little about yourself

I'm a mum with two children who are six and eight years of age, and I work in the prison service three days a week.

What do you want to do when you finish training?

I want to work as an antenatal teacher and fit this around my part-time working and family commitments.

What are you doing at the moment?

I took the level four qualification in 2013/14 then had a year off before returning to study for the Level 5 qualification part-time and continuing to work three days a week.

What do you enjoy most about the course?

That it builds on what I’ve already learned and encourages my own insight, knowledge and research.

I find tutorials the most beneficial part, they point you in the right direction. I live in Nottingham and travel about an hour to reach the study days in Birmingham.

What do you find challenging?

It gets really busy and next week we have exams. With a busy family life too I have to find the balance.

How do you balance study with your other commitments?

I try to be really strict, I block off in my diary the two days a week I’m not working and make that for study only. I’m also quite good at getting started on my studies early and don’t leave it until the last minute and then panic.

Was NCT able to help you with fees?

I had a bursary for level 4 and got a student loan for level 5 as this is my first degree.

What attracted you to study with NCT?

I was facing redundancy from the prison service. I was looking around but it was when I was searching for information for a friend who’d just had a baby, that I came upon the NCT website and found the information about antenatal courses so interesting. I have absolutely no regrets. It’s so rewarding teaching - every time I feel so positive and energised.

What would you say to someone applying to study the Birth and Beyond Foundation Degree?

You need to tease around the subjects. Be ready for lots of self-directed work. You think the learning isn't sinking-in but it’s stored for future use.

Are you interested in supporting new and expectant parents?

Find out more about training as an practitioner with our Birth and Beyond Foundation Degree.