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Upper Sixth students celebrate University offers


In this most extraordinary of years, our Upper Sixth students continue to receive offers from prestigious institutions across the country.

This year, the pandemic has led to a number of changes that have impacted on the lives and learning of our senior year group, with one such change leading to universities taking longer to consider the applications made by our young people.

Medics, Vets and Dentists

Once more we are beginning to receive positive news about offers being made to our aspiring Medics, Vets and Dentists. In 2020, fourteen of our leavers went on to study at university in these fields. Amongst a number of offers being made to this year’s applicants, Senior Prefect Rabeeah-Nuur Mohammed has offers from Manchester and Keele to study Medicine, as does George Zelhof, who has a deferred offer for 2022 from Liverpool; Orla Duffy has an offer from Bristol to study Veterinary Science; and Leena Soltan has an offer from King’s College, London to study Dentistry.

Leading universities

An ever-increasing number of our Upper Sixth Form have received all of their decisions from universities and are now in a position to make their final firm and insurance choices. Reece Linney has an offer to study Engineering at Girton College, Cambridge and Caitlin Cutts hopes to join him there to read Natural Sciences at Jesus College. Kate Langton, the editor of the 2020 SGS Historian magazine, has an offer to study History at Durham; Hannah Helsby, who joined SGS in the Sixth Form, has an offer to study International Management at King’s College, London; Matthew Howling has an offer to study Aerospace Engineering at Bristol; and Kitt Henderson has an offer to read Physics at York.

One of the stars of the 2020 School Production of Chicago, Holly Buckley, has an offer to study Psychology at Nottingham; Adam Gillespie has an offer to study Law at Lancaster; and First XI hockey player Zoe Jones has an offer to read Business Management at Liverpool.

Head of Sixth Form Mr David Stone said: “This year our pupils have had to be much more patient in terms of waiting to hear back from some universities for some courses. Their organisation and determination, supported by their UCAS Advisers, ensured that the vast majority of our pupils had submitted their applications well before Christmas. They have shown commendable patience while some await responses, particularly for the most competitive courses.”

Exceptional advice and support

Pupils receive thorough support and advice regarding their future study and career options and this begins as early as the Third Year of Senior School when pupils are invited to talks about Higher Education and applications to the world’s leading universities. Cross-curricular extension activities and the development of critical thinking skills start in Lower School, preparing pupils to explore the wider academic world.

The pupils benefit from a dedicated UCAS Adviser who personally oversees their application, as well as specific support for those applying to the most competitive universities. This also extends to preparation for tests, feedback and advice on submitted work, practice interviews and workshops.

Extra preparation is given for admissions tests such as UCAT and LNAT, which are some of the tests required for Medical, Dental and Law degrees. As the recruitment process for Medical, Veterinary Science and Dentistry is particularly rigorous, the school prepares candidates in a number of ways including practical sessions, ethical debates, role-playing and presentation skills. All of these activities have continued virtually through both periods of school closure to support the pupils in their preparations.

In 2020, our Higher Education Conference went virtual, with online sessions and Google Meets used to help set our prospective applicants up for the challenge of embarking on the UCAS process. Our UCAS Advisers are skilled and experienced in supporting those pupils who choose to further their studies overseas. Those with Oxbridge ambitions receive additional guidance and support from our Extension Co-ordinators. Pupils who hope to apply for places on Higher and Degree Apprenticeship programmes receive the bespoke support and guidance that they need to be confident of success.

Co-curricular activities such as Spotlight On… talks, Model United Nations, Young Enterprise and Debating Society help to equip the girls and boys with vital skills and knowledge required for the next stage of their academic life. Teaching staff offer extension sessions and mock interviews, bringing in professionals such as academics, medics and lawyers to provide invaluable expertise.

Mr Stone added: “Even in this most unusual of Sixth Form cycles, our work with the pupils ensures that every Sixth Former has the opportunity to fulfil their academic potential in their final two years in the school, whilst the breadth of opportunities and support on offer to all, particularly in their preparations for their next steps – be it university, apprenticeships or routes directly into the workplace, ensures that they are able to approach life beyond SGS with confidence and curiosity.”