The COVID-19 lockdown has come at a critical time for students preparing university applications, which for Oxford, must be submitted by 15 October.
To support these students, Wadham College is working in partnership with Causeway Education to offer online support with applications and personal statements (matching what Wadham would usually offer via face-to-face workshops at this time of year).
This opportunity, targeted at schools most likely to benefit from this support, has been greeted with enthusiasm by teachers and pupils. 114 pupils attended Personal Statement Webinars this week, and students who missed the webinar receive a recording of the session to watch in their own time, along with the PowerPoint slides and student workbook.
Head of Access and Outreach at Wadham College, Hugh Munro said: “Causeway specialises in providing university application support based on a research-led understanding of what makes a successful university application and the barriers students face. At a time when educational disadvantages are exacerbated and our access team is unable to work as usual, it’s brilliant to be able to collaborate with Causeway to support pupils from across our link schools. The students will be matched with mentors who will be able to provide one-to-one support tailored to the subject they’re applying for. We hope that this also takes some of the pressure off schools at a time when their focus is on adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic and its implications for the day to day operation of a school.”
The feedback from teachers in Wadham’s link areas has been overwhelmingly positive:
“Just to say how impressed I was with Friday's webinar. It was everything I'd hoped for and more. Very engaging and informative and pitched just right for my students. Thank you to you and the team.”
“I thought it [the webinar] was fantastic- and the best guidance I have seen in 10 years doing this job! … I received two emails from students 10 minutes after the end of the webinar stating how much they had enjoyed it and how much more confident they were after it. I have also received a personal statement first draft this afternoon. So thank you”
Thanks to the generosity of Wadham alumni support for our Access to Excellence programme, Wadham has been able to partner with Causeway to provide the support these students need, despite the restrictions of the pandemic.