From education to employment

Barnsley College student focuses on her future

Tegan Parkin, Barnsley College's Digital Photography student and founder of Tegan Parkin Photography.

Barnsley College Digital Photography student, Tegan Parkin, has turned her passion of photography into a business with the support of iTrust, the College’s business start-up programme designed exclusively for students.

Tegan’s interest in photography began when she received a camera for Christmas when she was at school which inspired her to get outside and shoot the world around her. Becoming ever more interested with nature and wildlife, Tegan then began to venture further away from home and into woodland photographing birds, insects and plants as well as experimenting with portrait photography.

Since attending College, Tegan’s desire to launch her photography business has continued to grow as she created a business name, Tegan Parkin Photography, started to build a portfolio and set up social media profiles for her services.

Tegan said: “I knew I wanted to start my own business ever since I finished high school. It’s always been a dream to be independent in the industry and eventually be self-employed.”

During her College course, Tegan has enjoyed practical tasks which have improved her DSLR skills and ensured she uses the equipment properly. Outside of her studies, she has contacted other photography businesses to ask for advice on how to set up a business and how best to approach the first steps in entrepreneurship.

Tegan learnt more about the College’s Enterprise department through the College’s Enterprise Team Leader and has since worked collaboratively with the team to gain a deeper understanding of business and the best ways to get noticed.

Barnsley College’s Enterprise department is home to the iTrust initiative, a joint venture between the College, The Barnsley Chronicle and The Business Village, which supports students interested in starting up a business in Barnsley. Students who receive support from iTrust will have access to an array of information and guidance such as mentoring from industry specialists and local businesses and financial investments.

As part of the programme, Tegan will also receive a grant of up to £250 which she hopes to use to purchase new equipment such as lenses and soft box lights to expand her services.

She said: “I would definitely recommend that other students who are hoping to make a start on their business get involved in the iTrust programme as it is very beneficial and the advice they give you is fantastic!”

Lee Perks, Enterprise Team Leader at Barnsley College, added:

“Barnsley College is committed to transforming the lives of students, staff and communities and we are thrilled to support Tegan on her entrepreneurial journey. She has shown real drive and determination to build a fantastic future for herself and I look forward to watching her grow in the industry.”

To find out more about any of the courses on offer at Barnsley College, visit

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