Sir Lenny Henry

Training just isn’t an “accident of delivery” and is a proper for everybody, comic Sir Lenny Henry will say as he turns into a college chancellor.

In his first speech as Birmingham Metropolis College’s new chancellor, Sir Lenny is anticipated to speak about how he grew up believing schooling was “not meant for the likes of me”.

He didn’t begin finding out for till he was an grownup.

Sir Lenny, 58, was awarded his first diploma on the age of 46.

He first tried to achieve whereas working with comedy duo Tommy Cannon and Bobby Ball within the early 1980s.

Sir Lenny, who obtained a knighthood final yr, will inform an viewers at Birmingham City Corridor on Tuesday: “I grew up with the idea that schooling was not meant for the likes of me.

“It wasn’t till I used to be doing a summer time season with Cannon and Ball in 1981 that I used to be courageous sufficient to embark on my GCSEs.

“It was powerful going, however I acquired by way of it.

“I used to be 46 earlier than I acquired my first diploma, with the Open College, and, whereas a comparative latecomer to greater schooling – whose profession hardly relied on securing a BA or an MA after my title – that have modified my life.

“It opened my thoughts to extra prospects, new considering and totally different views.

“Being chancellor of Birmingham Metropolis College is an opportunity for me to provide again, to contribute one thing to the era of younger folks leaving faculty now and to these folks coming again in to schooling – mature college students – who, like me, missed out on the prospect once they have been youthful.”

Sir Lenny, who was born in Dudley, will reward the college for having one of the crucial numerous scholar our bodies within the UK.

Greater than 45% of its college students come from low-income households and 48% are from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds.

“This establishment understands that schooling is a proper, not an accident of delivery, and for those who’re good sufficient, inventive sufficient and hardworking sufficient, Birmingham Metropolis College can offer you life-changing alternatives, no matter your background,” he’ll say.