Spotlight on…Harry Pratt and Liam Willett

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First male Norland College graduates

spotlight-liam

Liam Willett (left) and Harry Pratt

HOW DOES IT FEEL?

L: I feel honoured to have made history. However, it comes with responsibilities as I’m aware I am a brand ambassador for Norland, as well as for men working within the early years sector. I hope this might set a precedent to inspire more men in the future.

H: It’s been really nice to help change the perceptions of nannies and challenge some of the stereotypes of men working within the childcare industry. There are currently six male students at Norland, and it would be nice to see this number continue to grow.

WHY DO YOU THINK THERE IS SUCH A LACK OF MEN WORKING IN CHILDCARE?

H: I think it is due to the historic stereotypes of female nannies and the fact that many childcare settings are female-dominated. These settings can then often be daunting for men for fear of being the only male in the setting or being labelled feminine for pursuing such a career. The only way to change this is to challenge the perceptions of gender stereotypes, like we have seen celebrities such as Daniel Craig doing recently.

WHY DID YOU WANT TO BECOME A NORLAND NANNY?

H: I was originally pursuing a career in teaching before applying to Norland, as I didn’t know boys could apply. I was always aware Norland was the best for any training relating to childcare.

L: I felt Norland would offer me the opportunity to fulfil my ambitions and improve the lives of children I worked with. I loved the entire course, but the practical elements stood out for me. I am now competent at sewing, something I never thought would happen!

HAVE YOU GOT JOBS SINCE GRADUATING?

L: I currently look after a two-year-old boy in London. I like to think he sees me as a brother, as opposed to his nanny.

H: In the New Year I will begin working with a family in London who have three boys. I would eventually like to return to teaching and lecture at Norland, hopefully inspiring a new generation of students who will then help change the stereotypes of the childcare industry.

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