It’s been almost a year since Blackburn Central High School helped the launch of the East Lancashire Scholarship Programme.
The programme targets students who have the ability to get to university but may not necessarily have the funds or aspiration to do so. The programme is planned to run for four years and is working on improving students’ confidence, self-esteem, their application writing skills, as well as giving them experience of university life.
Working with Lancaster University and Villiers Park, a group of our students have been attending residential training courses. The feedback from the students has been great:
“I enjoyed the Lancaster University residential because it was an opportunity for me to meet new people as well as get a better understanding of the university lifestyle. We were put into mixed groups and had to design a faculty in a university; my team had to take control of the Creative Arts faculty. We had fun after work as we got to play a quiz and relax in our rooms. Overall it was an interesting trip which was a good experience so I can prepare myself in the future.” – Safa 10A
“On our trip to Lancaster University (as a part of the Villier’s Park Scholar’s Programme) we developed a range of life-skills ranging from simpler, universal things like time management and group work to more personal things, for example, confidence.
Over the course of the 2 days, we were given one main focus, to create a university. After choosing the name, we were split into groups that included 5 to 6 people – none of which included 2 people from the same school. In these groups, we were given a faculty and then a main role. After working on our faculty by creating a logo, PowerPoint and verbal presentation, we were finally ready to perform.
On the second day, we all performed as one big group which is a lot of pressure on people with low confidence but also emotionally rewarding after the task had been completed. Overall, the stay over was amazing, the rooms we stayed in were perfect and they also offered free WiFi!” – Maria 10A
“The residential at Lancaster University was the perfect opportunity to meet new people, build our confidence, and learn about university and what it offers.
We were put into groups and assigned a faculty. Our task over the next 2 days was to design a building, a logo and decide on the admissions for our faculty. As the admissions officer for our faculty I decided on who we were accepting into our university and the required grades for our students. At the end of our two days we presented our decisions to other students and our mentors.” – Aisha 10A