A former Royal Marine has headed back to the books with his sights set on a career in construction engineering.
Dylan Jones, 25, who served as a peacekeeper in Kosovo, was one of the first students to enrol for a two-year, work-based Foundation Degree launched at Kingston University last year.
He is employed by civil engineering firm Edmund Nuttall Limited, where he gets practical training at the company's Warrington rail depot counting towards his degree.
The rest of his time is spent at the university's School of Engineering.
Dylan, from North Wales, who spent a five-year stint seeing the world as a marine, has ambitions to take his education even further.
"After my Foundation Degree, I plan to upgrade to an honours degree and my aim is to become a chartered engineer," he said.
"Coming to Kingston University and working at the same time was one of the best choices I could have made.
"Getting paid while studying is also a big plus."
Dylan is one of a number of students eyeing a solid foothold on the construction career ladder by completing the Kingston course and the associated Level Three National Vocational Qualification (NVQ).
Programme manager Steve Houchin said the university's work-based learning degrees gave students excellent prospects.
"The construction industry is crying out for qualified employees," Mr Houchin said.
"The industry is tightening its work practices and has also set up a certification scheme to ensure workers have the right skills for the job."
Completing the Foundation Degree ensures students are eligible to apply for the construction skills gold supervisory card allowing them to work on site.
The course is open to school and college leavers as well as people already holding down jobs and the self-employed.
It paves the way for a full honours degree qualification after an extra year's study and graduate apprenticeship schemes in the industry.