Preparation For University
Preparing to go to University can be a daunting prospect for many students. At Coloma we aim to provide girls with all the support they will need to manage this transition. This ranges from the practical aspects of deciding what courses and careers they wish to pursue, navigating their way through UCAS applications, and writing personal statements to learning about financial management and personal safety.
Through our Personal, Social and Health Education programme, aligned with our extensive Careers, Education, Information, Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) and Careers and Work Related Education (CWRE) provision, we aim to give girls the support , knowledge and confidence they need to take this step successfully.
Key Elements of our support programme are:-
University Application Support
Through our experienced 6th Form Tutors, Heads of Year and Head of 6th Form along with outside specialist support we aim to provide the girls with all they will need to make a successful application to the Universities of their choice. From personal statements to managing their way through the UCAS application process, Coloma will support students step by step to make sure their applications are appropriate and show the girls , whether through written application or at interview to their maximum potential. Additional support will be available to those students making supported Oxbridge applications, led by a specialist in this field.
Reading List Suggestions for UCAS
Universities will want to see evidence of students’ passion for their chosen subject. This includes relevant literature, periodicals, podcasts and TED talks. Explore relevant themes and works!
You can access lists of some suggested reading on our school intranet by logging on with your school login details here.
Additionally, you can use Google to find further recommendations for reading towards your chosen course.
Finally, explore the UCAS website by clicking here.
Independent Careers Advice
Coloma has in post a qualified careers adviser with extensive experience and knowledge in providing impartial guidance both in the independent and state education sectors. Students in Years 9 – 13 have either 1 to 1 guidance interviews, or group sessions on a variety of career and educational topics. The interview can include examining with the student, career ideas, different qualifications, learning pathways and higher education and what steps towards the student’s goals may be necessary.
Careers Events and Activities
In addition to the 1:1 approach provided Coloma has an extensive programme of careers input for all girls within the curriculum and at special careers events.
UCAS run a number of Higher Education Conventions across the country. At such conventions over 100 exhibitors are present, the bulk representing universities and colleges across the UK with an increasing number representing EU providers. Other organisations such as the Armed Forces, African Conservation Experience, the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives are also present. To reduce travelling costs and loss of curriculum time during the day, Coloma traditionally attend this event at either Sussex or Surrey in the Spring Term of Year 12. Students undertake some preparatory work prior to the visit so that their visit is both focused and purposeful.
Post 18 Conference
This is a 2 day event run in the summer term of Year 12.
1 day is devoted to an Interview Skills Workshop (run by an external education consultant) where students build on their knowledge and skills developed in Year 8 (MIRG) and Year 10 (Mock Interview) Students explore the “ideal language” for an interview whether it be for college, university or the workplace. In their groups comprising interviewer, interviewee and observer, students are challenged to “present” and critically assess each other’s performance. During another part of the same day students participate in a “Workplace Awareness” workshop. This involves problem solving and team building activities working with external speakers which draw upon their expertise and experience of working with different organisations.
The 2nd day of the Post 18 conference is the Guest Speakers’ day which hosts 48 speakers during eight, 30 minute sessions. The students have a choice between 6 speakers who offer talks at each of the eight timed sessions. There is, therefore, an opportunity for our students to meet with up to 8 different speakers during the day and find out as much as they can about their areas of interest. Our guest speakers are drawn from a number of different organisations, businesses and universities. Coloma has strong links with ex-students who are either in careers or studying at university and, also keen and loyal support from a number of academic tutors representing Queen Mary London, University College London, St Mary’s Twickenham, Heythrop London, Royal Holloway London, Kings College London, Brighton and the University of East Anglia.
This is a bi-annual event at which in previous years over 50 organisations and businesses have been represented. It is a mix of academic and vocational careers and a small number of learning and training providers such as John Ruskin, Jace and Virgo Fidelis.
This evening event is open to students in Years 9 – 13.
Labour Market Information
This term describes any information or tool ( including the internet) that students can be directed to when investigating work available in different sectors of industry e.g. Information Technology, Financial Services, Hospitality & Catering etc at a local, national and international level. At Coloma labour market information is typically explored by careers advisers during IAG interviews. Reference is also made to sectors of work that are expanding or declining in both the Careers programme taught in Years 7 – 10 and in the activities Learn to Earn and In Business with the Games.
Life Skills through Personal, Social and Health Education
A full and lively programme of activities, which includes numerous outside visitors to speak on a variety of issues is in place for all students. Topics include:
- Personal Safety
- Interview Skills
- Substance and alcohol abuse
- Financial Management
- Being a citizen
- Children’s Act
- Health Issues
- Charity Work
- Gap Year Activities