Denise Clarke-Williams

Denise Clarke-Williams, who works with Kensington and Chelsea College as a NVQ Assessor, describes her career.

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Denise’s story is part of a collection of inspirational videos commissioned by icould, an independent organisation managed by CRAC: the Career Development Organisation

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Tapescript for Denise Clarke-Williams

My name’s Denise Clarke-Williams, and I work with the Kensington and Chelsea College. I work as a NVQ Assessor, travelling around and assessing people at their place of work. It’s a journey I arrived at by default actually, I was working in a Nursery. It came to pass I’d done some studying, I was met by my ex-tutors, and they said that there was jobs on offer at the college.

When I was at school I thought I’d be into fashion. I loved fashion, my eldest sister was a fashion designer, and that’s what I aspired to be. At no stage did I ever think that I would be going into child care, or lecturing, or anything of the sort. It’s a career where you’re sort of helping people, you know, working with others to help them to gain something in life. It makes me feel good, I must say, I feel like I’m doing something that’s useful. And I’m actually quite proud of myself. The fact that I’ve managed to achieve something that’s worthwhile.

I loved school. I was always quite outgoing. I was usually the first one to sort of jump up and shout for the cause. I think I was quite fun, I dunno. I think I might have been a bit cheeky. But I didn’t get expelled at no stage, so I couldn’t have been that bad.

The moment I feel proud of? Yes. I would say that was when I completed my Foundation Degree. At the time that I started, I had just found out that my husband was diagnosed with cancer, two brain tumours. And I was not sure if I would be able to do this course, obviously because of that – those circumstances. I embarked on it in September of 2003, not really thinking I would get through – and I did. My husband support – he was like, you know, you have to do this. And yeah, that’s my – that’s something – you can see by my face – I’m proud of that, yes.

Inspirational is the words that I use for my parents. My father is no longer with us, he’s in another place. They left Jamaica in – I think my father came in 1952 to England – 1951/52 – and my mother came, I think, the year after. They had a pretty rough time, you know, race riots in Notting Hill, my father was a part of that. They’ve always been very just parents, and they brought us up with what I would say – with a caring heart. And I think with that sort of foundation, I think it’s pretty hard to sort of stray off.

I like fun, I like to laugh. I think laughing is a remedy – and to keep you young, and keep your face flexible, so as long as I have quality time with my children, then that’s my fun. Having life and doing something with my life it does – it makes, you know, I just say thank God. I wake up in the morning, and I say Thank you God for making me be awake, and to be able to step out the front door, and do something worthwhile.