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The Cambridge Scottish Schools Tour

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Emma, Homerton's Schools Liaison Officer

As part of the University of Cambridge Area Links Scheme, each College is responsible for undertaking outreach work with students in set areas of the country. Homerton has had historic links with South Yorkshire and West London as part of the scheme, but has also now taken on work with Buckinghamshire and Scotland (which is shared with Selwyn and Pembroke Colleges). As part of this work our Schools Liaison Officer, Emma Smith, recently returned from a two and a half week tour of Scottish Schools. The tour started with a collection of Information Seminars run for S4 and S5 students (Year 11 and 12 equivalents) in the cities of Aberdeen, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

These were large school events, where around 350 students and 60 teachers from 41 different schools attended. For these events Emma was joined by Homerton's science admissions tutor Dr Paul Elliott, and colleagues from Pembroke and Selwyn. The seminars started off with an introduction to Cambridge and the admissions process, before students and teachers were split into two groups. Teachers were taken by the admissions tutors for a session on how to support applicants, whilst students heard about financing their studies at English universities, student life and the student experience.

After these seminars Emma and Michelle, Schools Liaison Officer at Selwyn, stayed in Scotland for an additional two weeks to visit schools who couldn’t attend the seminars. They visited schools from the Orkneys to the Borders, and most places in between. They spoke to students from 15 different schools on a wide array of topics, from more general talks on the benefits of going to University, to more specific information on Russell Group Universities and Oxford and Cambridge. The pair also met up with organisations such as the Social Mobility Foundation and Lothians Equal Access Programme to find out how we can better work with these groups.

The final day was spent in Edinburgh at the Oxford and Cambridge Student Conference attended by teams of Oxford and Cambridge students, admissions staff and academics for a full day of admissions sessions, subject-specific sessions and an information stand. Prospective students from all over Scotland came to find out more about both institutions and to receive personalised advice and guidance.

Homerton will be returning to Scotland in September for our S6 Seminars which provide support on interviews to those who have decided to apply to Cambridge or Oxford. If you would like to read about the tour in more detail you can go to the Scottish Schools Tour blog. Any alumni working in schools, especially in Homerton’s link areas, are welcome to email Emma at access@homerton.cam.ac.uk to find out about opportunities for students and teachers.

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