Why did you apply for the programme?

I applied for the programme because it was a new opportunity which I have never been offered before. A poster was put up in my study room, so I logged onto the website and looked for a course. I thought it would be a good thing to apply for as I could see what both university life and my degree is like.

Did you have any worries before attending?

I didn’t know anyone going on the summer school, so I was worried that I wouldn’t fit in and make any friends, but I did in the end. I was also worried about travelling. It was my first time on a train alone and travelling from Kent to Durham was a long way considering I never normally get trains. I had to figure out how trains work by myself—before, I would just let adults around me tell me where to go.

What were your highlights of the programme?

The highlight of my experience was meeting new people from so many different backgrounds. I met people from all over the country that I would have never thought I would meet, let alone be friends with. Now, my academic group is planning to meet up—before this I never thought that I could have such a wide friend group! I have gained so much from the programme. My self-confidence has improved massively. My general people skills have also improved. I feel like I can now properly introduce myself, which I learnt to do due to the volume of people in the summer school that I spoke to. I was able to decide the degree I want to pursue thanks to the course I went on. The summer school has shaped me as a person for the better.

What are your plans for the future?

In the future, I want to complete a degree in primary education. When I’m in university, I wish to be a student ambassador so that if an opportunity such as helping in a summer school arises, I can be as helpful as the mentors were through the week. I wish to travel the world and go to less fortunate countries to teach English-speaking lessons abroad. I would also like to be part of the Sutton Trust Alumni so that I can encourage more young people from all backgrounds to take part in this programme.

What would you say to someone who is unsure about applying?

All I have to say anything considering the programme is to APPLY, APPLY, APPLY. Look at what courses are provided and apply to one. Apply to as many as you can, it gives you something to write about for UCAS and helps you decide if both university and your chosen degree are right for you. Good luck!