On Monday 30th April, working with student ambassadors from the University of Brighton, all year 7 students at Durrington High School had the chance to explore the possibility of going to university. Facilitated by Vicki Johnson, Widening Participation Lead at Brighton University, the students worked in small groups to play a board game designed to introduce them to university. Each team was led by a University ambassador who could help answer their questions and arm them with the knowledge to start thinking about their own possible path to university.
Community and Enterprise Manager at Durrington High School, Mrs Jefford, who organised the event, said ‘today is part of a rolling programme designed to introduce all students at Durrington High School to university. Following this event all students will visit the University of Brighton campus during year 8 and in year 9 they will work with the University of Brighton again to look at their option choices and how they can impact their university path. The programme is about raising aspirations and making all of our students aware of what university can offer them when they start thinking about their futures.’
There were plenty of questions ranging from finance issues such as ‘when will I have to pay my student loan back?’ and ‘what am I allowed to do with the money?’ to academic questions such as ’what are the lectures like?’, ‘how many students are in each lecture?’ and they were all amazed to hear that the university library is open 24 hours and that there were 40,000 courses to choose from. Vicki Johnson is passionate about ‘giving children the basic understanding of the university terminology so they have the language they need to succeed at university.’ And the day certainly achieved that.