Homerton has had a long history with the study of Education; it was until recently an independent institution for the training of teachers. However, since we became a fully diversified College of the University of Cambridge, that job now belongs to the Faculty of Education, which is in charge of admitting and training students on the PGCE courses at the University.
All University students must become a member of a College while they are in Cambridge. Homerton has close ties that give us some significant advantages as a College home for PGCEs: the Faculty of Education is situated alongside and within the grounds of the College, and many of our Fellows teach on the courses. We are fully aware of the shape of the PGCE year: we know it starts earlier in the new academic year; we know that trainees are in schools for set periods of the year. In short we are sympathetic to the needs of PGCE students. As a Homerton member you will be allocated a Personal Tutor who will be able to help you in case you encounter any pastoral difficulties through the year; this help is offered at times you can make by specialised staff who understand the course as well as the College.
There is a strong community of PGCE and other graduate students living in College in specially allocated en-suite rooms, although most students live near schools where they will be teaching, or with their families. Unusually among Cambridge Colleges, Homerton has some free car parking spaces available for those members who have specific family commitments or special needs whether they are resident PGCEs or who travel to Cambridge by car. Resident and non-resident PGCE members can enjoy the many College facilities available including The Griffin bar and buttery and the Great Hall (with weekly Formal dinners); the library and IT Suite (both 24 hour access); sports, music and drama facilities (including the new gym); and membership of both the undergraduate (JCR) and the graduate (MCR) student unions, which organise programmes of social events and provide a framework for student representation on College committees.
At the start of the course you will be invited to a Matriculation dinner to get to know fellow members of your cohort (and experience the infamous Homerton Horn!), and when you finish your course you will be invited to another celebratory dinner in the Great Hall. Also during the academic year there are termly 'Supper Seminars' organised specifically for the College's PGCE community, and other 'not to be missed' events.
We are rightly proud of our long history of training teachers, and even though this is now largely devolved to the Faculty we still have a profound commitment to Education and to helping make sure that Cambridge continues to produce highly regarded qualified teachers. We hope this will encourage you to choose Homerton as your College 'home'; and we are delighted to continue as the home College for those who wish to take up the part-time Master of Education course (M.Ed), available to those who successfully complete their PGCE training.
Please take advantage of your visit to the Faculty to come and look round our beautiful buildings and grounds, meet staff and students, and try out The Griffin or the Dining Hall. Please contact the Graduate Tutor, Dr Melanie Keene, or the PGCE/MEd Administrator, Mrs Louise Roberts, if you would like to look around, to meet somone to talk to about College life, or if you have any other questions.