29 Jan A super start for our pupils at the ‘Warwick Sutton Scholars’ programme
Written by Ibrahim, Year 8 Student Reporter
It was Saturday the 12th of January, when five fortunate students (accompanied by their teacher Mrs Nguyen) went to Warwick University for the launch of the ‘Warwick Sutton Scholars’ event. We had all been granted a two-year scholarship at the university, and were eager to begin our experience and find out what university life was all about.
It was nearly 10am; when we all gathered together in the massive and well-decorated theatre of the Warwick Business School. The seats were velvety, and comfortable to sit on. Then the theatre was quickly filled with Year 8 students and their parents coming from Coventry and further afield. Later on, in an ice-breaking activity, we realised there were parents and students whose journey took more than 1.5 hours by car! How lucky we were to live not too far from the university.
Then Maria Kehr, the ‘Warwick Sutton Scholars’ Programme Coordinator, talked about what Sutton Scholars is really about. She explained the programme is funded by the Sutton Trust, an organisation whose goal is to help and inspire highly able students in Years 8 and 9 to get into higher education. There are four other universities that run the Sutton Scholars programme: the University of Cambridge, the Imperial College London, the University of Nottingham and University College London (UCL). 1800 young people have benefited from the Scholarship, and currently there are 640 students taking part. Maria also explained that there would be group projects and some homework for us to do, and that the set tasks would not interfere with our school work. Yay!
After our introduction, the remaining part of the day was for group work. We were all guided to go into different rooms around the building. There were around 6-7 of us with two mentors from the University. After a quick introduction, we all started talking to each other. The atmosphere of the room was really nice, and I even actually managed to make some new friends. The positive vibes in me made me appreciate staying after school towards the end of November 2018, when myself and my four other classmates spent a long time staying in the Learning Resource Centre to make sure we filled in the Sutton Scholars application forms to the best of our abilities. The hard work had paid off, and now we were here to enjoy the day.
As the morning went on, we found ourselves in small groups again, but with our parents this time. We went to the ‘BonLab Chemistry taster session’, to learn about how gels were made, and how different particles could be altered during simple processes, including heating. It was so awesome!
After that extraordinary demonstration, our mentors (Ines and Kieron) gave us all a tour around the University campus. Walking along the footpaths surrounded by the green scenery, we felt lucky that the weather had turned calmer, with a gentle wintry breeze rustling our clothes. I thought that our first session at the university was special, and I knew that I needed to control my excitement for our next session together.
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