One group of approximately 30 students, who are following the Seren and HE+ programmes either at the College or in local secondary schools, recently took part in an online workshop organised by Swansea Seren and HE+ Coordinator Fiona Beresford and featuring guest speaker Lewis Devonald, a recent Modern History graduate from Lincoln College, Oxford.
The session provided the learners with advice and top tips about making a successful application to Oxford or Cambridge University, and gave them an opportunity to ask a variety of questions about the application process.
"Having to adjust to new working conditions since the lockdown has opened up a vast array of exciting opportunities to provide students with remote access to alumni, current students, and outreach departments from Oxford and Cambridge," says Fiona. "Although face-to-face individual advice will remain at the core of our Oxbridge Programme, there are definitely considerable benefits to be had from continuing with these online, interactive sessions and we will certainly be integrating them into our Oxbridge Programme in future."
Among the tips given by Lewis were reading outside the curriculum to further develop subject knowledge, entering the essay competitions run by Oxford and Cambridge to demonstrate passion for the subject, being consistent and credible in personal statements, and practising admissions tests and assessments under timed conditions.
"As we all adjust to a remote educational setting, it is so important that students continue to receive a range of opportunities to inspire and encourage them to pursue academic study at the highest level," adds Fiona. "We are thrilled to have the support of guest speakers like Lewis as we support our students in making competitive applications to university over the coming months."
Fiona is now looking forward to welcoming Lewis back for a follow-up session and is already planning more remote workshops, with two scheduled with Jesus College, Oxford over the next couple of weeks.