In tandem with my desire to promote apprenticeships to young people in Fareham, I’m also very passionate about making every child aware that a university education is an accessible opportunity to them. I believe that every child, regardless of background, should have equality of opportunity when it comes to higher education. To achieve this, I set up the ‘Fareham Schools Universities Conference’.
At my most recent conference, I was delighted to host over 100 Year 11 students from Cams Hill School, Fareham Academy, Boundary Oak and Brookfield Community School to hear three presentations from representatives of the University of Cambridge.
The conference saw students learning about every aspect of a university education. This covered the process of getting into a university, how to choose a university, the benefits of a university education and a summary of the Oxbridge process.
I am committed to helping Fareham’s up and coming youngsters to get the opportunities they deserve. It was a pleasure speaking to students about my own experiences and uncovering some of the commonly held myths about further education.
I was pleased to hear positive feedback from some of the children who attended the event. Commenting, a student said: "Attending the conference has motivated and informed me more on aiming and applying for Russell group universities. I found the guest speakers to be down to earth, honest and lively about their experience at Oxbridge, something that had helped me feel less alienated and more at ease. Additionally, the booklets and examples of writing personal statements or CVs were useful for many of us."
I want to extend a big thank you to all who participated including Fareham College, Cams Hill School, Fareham Academy, Boundary Oak and Brookfield Community School. It’s wonderful to hear that, as a result of this conference, students who hadn’t thought about going to university have now said that they’re really considering a university education – that’s what this conference is all about. I look forward to continuing to promote university as an attainable and accessible option for our youngsters and will certainly be hosting this event annually.