'It was meant to be' - Proud siblings follow in mum's footsteps to graduate from UEA

In 2005 Nicki Bramford sat in her graduation ceremony, glowing with pride that she had completed a law degree while also bringing up her two children as a single mum.

This week she returned to the University of East Anglia, to watch those two children graduate on the same stage.

Ms Bramford said: "The achievement I felt the day I graduated, with them by my side, was enormous.

"But I wonder if actually this is how it was meant to be - that we all ended up going to UEA and sharing this special community. I'm just so incredibly proud of them both."

Nicki Bramford with her daughter, Sophia Hunter. Credit: ITV News Anglia

The 48-year-old's daughter Sophia Hunter completed a masters in clinical and associate psychology and, just like her mum, she had her hands full while studying. Her daughter Mila is two and-a-half.

The 26-year-old said: "It's been challenging but you get to the end of the road and you've done it.

"Yes, it's a lot of late nights. It's a lot of early mornings and running around. But once you get there and get to the end I always think; it's me that did it.

"I'm really proud of myself and I'm really proud that I get to say I did it with all these adversities and with my little girl by my side."

Sophia's younger brother Tom graduated in psychology.

He was five at his mum's graduation and remembers "constantly throwing her hat up in the air".

The 23-year-old said: "I remember coming to this uni and seeing her friends and even now, to be honest, I have memories come back when I'm on campus.

"When things get tough and I think I can't do this, I think of my sister who's a single mum and my mum who was a single mum at uni.

"If they can both do it, it should be easy for me!"

Sophia and Tom have also followed in their mum's footsteps when it comes to their careers - all three work for the NHS at Norfolk and Suffolk's mental health trust.

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