Did you catch us in The Guardian?

Did you catch us in The Guardian?

Our Impact Success stories University What's new? Young people

Just in case you missed it, GT Scholars was mentioned in The Guardian at the weekend! One of our alumni, Micheal, was featured in an article about his perseverance through university despite the challenges he faces. Micheal mentioned how being on the GT Scholars programme helped him achieve some of the best A-level grades at his school and helped motivate him to pursue his aspirations.

The article has been an insight into some of the struggles faced by young people when pursuing their ambitions. In Micheal’s case, since going into university, he’s had to work 38 hours a week in order to fund his studies. No one should have to go through this at university and the article has led to many people reaching out to help him, including the creation of a GoFundMe page to support him through the final part of his degree course. We also hope that there will be further safeguards put in place to prevent young people like Micheal from having to fund their own studies, particularly if it is their first degree.

For us, this article reminds us of the importance of our work at GT Scholars. We feel very privileged that he still remembers what he gained from being on the programme. We believe that every child deserves a chance to succeed regardless of his or her background and this is one of the reasons why we run programmes for ambitious young people and provide free places to young people on Free School Meals.

To find out more about our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programmes for ambitious young people, register your interest here.


GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. We run after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.

Think you don’t need maths tutoring? Think again!

Think you don’t need maths tutoring? Think again!

Growth mindset Post 16 Private tuition University What's new? Young people

Imagine for a moment that you are sitting in a restaurant. A waiter walks over to your table to take your order, “One double cheeseburger, a medium chips and a regular coke, please”, the waiter jots down the order and reads it back to you, you nod, satisfied and he walks off. As you sit there waiting for your food, the restaurant starts to fill up, a family of four take the table to your left. A young couple is guided to a table directly in front of you. There is a group of ladies; celebrating a bachelorette party, fourteen in total guided to a collection of tables lined up in the centre of the room.

More people come and a few leave as you sit there an hour later and still no food. You notice that the young couple, sitting opposite from you, is staring lovingly into each other’s eyes over two orders of delicious looking ribs and mashed potatoes. You look at the table with the bachelorette and her posse, where one of the ladies is making a toast as the others enjoy an array of starters.

You look to the family of four, study their frowns, their “plateless” table and think to yourself at least you are not alone; they too, are victims of this appalling service. At least that is until your waiter arrives at their table, their orders on a tray. Fuming now, you wait until they are served and then call your waiter over to your table. “What in the world is going on, where is my food?” you demand. The waiter looks at you as if you are crazy, absolutely bonkers, “What are you talking about sir, the chef is starting on your order as we speak?”

“Starting, he is only starting!” You shout, shocked by the complete disregard for you, the casual dismissiveness of your waiter’s answer and the outright injustice of it all. “I’ve been here for over an hour, most of the people you have served came after me, I was first and yet they get their food before me…” “So what?” your waiter says, cutting you off mid-sentence. Of course, you can’t believe what he just said; you are at a loss for words. Your waiter looks toward three of his colleagues approaching, trays overloaded with soft drinks, ten double cheeseburgers and eighteen medium packets of chips

Your waiter smiles, “Here comes your order sir,” he tells you. “This is not my order,” you say as the three waiters carrying the trays begin to offload on your table. “What do you mean sir?” Your waiter seems genuinely surprised, “Did you not order, double cheeseburgers, medium chips and cokes.” “I ordered one double cheeseburger, one medium chips and one regular coke, not this mess.”  You are yelling now, beyond boiling point. “But sir, what difference does it make, whether we serve you first or last, two cheeseburgers or ten?” Your waiter asks sincerely, “Are you not the one who said, you do not need math?” You just sit there, unable to speak. “Oh yes, and this meal will cost you two hundred and thirty-seven thousand pounds. Now is that going to be cash or card?”

Ok, I admit that this is a bit extreme, or is it? Shakuntala Devi once wrote: “Without mathematics, there’s nothing you can do. Everything around you is mathematics. Everything around you is numbers.”

I want you to ask yourself, what do you want for your future? Do you hope to own a house someday, own a car? Well, those come with payments like taxes, mortgage, and insurance and you will need math to calculate those or risk paying too much, two hundred and thirty-seven thousand pounds for a cheeseburger as an example.

How about your career of choice? Math is needed for almost every single profession in the world. If you want to be a biologist, archaeologist, an attorney or work as a cashier at Tesco, it is without a doubt that numbers will be part and parcel of the job. Basically, you will never be able to live without math so accept it and try to make learning math fun.

A friend once told me, “I want to be a photographer, what do I need to know about calculus or trigonometry?” Well, that is quite simple actually, a photographer will need to calculate the depth of field, determine the correct film speed, shutter speed, aperture, and exposure, and so much more.

Do you like playing video games, Playstation, Xbox, Wii, and others? Do you have a few killer ideas that you just know will make great games? If so, guess what? Math is a necessity. Aspiring video game programmers will need to study trigonometry, physics, and calculus.

As a boy, I had dreams of becoming an astronaut, “to go where no man has gone before.” If that’s you, then consider this, astronauts use maths in order to make precise mathematical calculations, from how the spacecraft leaves Earth’s atmosphere to how the astronauts pilot the craft. So no math, no Captain Kirk.

Math is a necessity and when considering the uses and benefits thereof there are a number of reasons to learn math:

  • Develop your “lifelong learning” skills:  Asking others for help, looking stuff up, learning to deeply focus on tasks, being organized, etc.
  • Develop your work ethic:  Not making excuses, not blaming others, not being lazy, being on time, not giving up so easily, etc.  This is more important for “success” than raw IQ. There is no shortcut.
  • Get better at learning complicated things.  You are less afraid of complex ideas and classes.
  • Develop pride & confidence in your ability to understand complicated things.  This is not fake self-esteem, but one that is earned.
  • Certain careers in science, health, technology, and engineering require serious Math skills.

Studies suggest that intelligent & motivated people are generally more interesting and happier. Your frontal lobe is not done developing until the age of  25-27. The more things you can learn before reaching that age, the more things you can learn over your lifetime. A survey concluded that 20% to 40% of college freshmen take remedial courses.  Do you want to retake high school courses in college, or do you want to take real college classes?

If you need assistance with Maths or English, sign up for GT Scholars flagship programme, GT Scholars Academic  Programme. This programme not only has tutoring in Maths or English, but also provides skill-building, enrichment and mentoring.  Keep a lookout for our enrichment days and our skill-building workshops by signing up to our newsletter.

12 Things You Can Do to Breathe More Life into Your CV or Personal Statement

12 Things You Can Do to Breathe More Life into Your CV or Personal Statement

University What's new? Young people

The saying goes: “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” That is why a great CV or personal statement is extremely important. It is a representation of who you are and will be responsible for the initial decision of whether a potential interview is on the horizon or not.

An employer often has to search through hundreds of CVs to find the best candidate for the post that needs to be filled. Often an employer is pressed for time, so a CV that does not impress at first glance could be easily rejected.

This can make creating a CV to be a daunting task. Applicants usually find themselves endlessly pondering over questions such as “How could I make my CV or personal statement stand out from the crowd?” or “How could I prevent my CV being overlooked and not be added to the pile of unsuccessful applications?’’

To answer some of these questions, here are 12 things that you can do to breathe more life into your CV or personal statement:

  1. Make it readable and pay attention to the layout: First and foremost, you want to make your CV readable. This will make it easy for your potential employer or the dean of admissions to find information and navigate to different sections of your CV.  Information provided must be to the point and quick to read.
  2. Make use of a professional resource: GT Scholars is an excellent example of an organisation assisting young scholars through mentorships and workshops. Great guidance for putting a good CV together is essential if you are not too sure of what to do. You could also gain great experience that will be really useful when entering the professional world.
  3. Adapt your CV to the role: Try and stray from a generic CV. This does not mean that you have to write a new CV for every position you want to apply for. Simply adapt a few details on your CV to be more prominent to a specific recruiter. This applies even more to a personal statement as you want to make sure that the qualities that are most suitable stand out.
  4. The importance of the first 3 words: In writing, it is believed that the first three words and the last three words in a written piece are what people remember most. It makes sense to apply the same principle when writing bullet points in your CV because employers do not read the whole document word for word.
  5. Pay attention to buzzwords: Try to avoid words that have been overused. These words have lost their charm and most of the time it will have lost its meaning to the recruiter as they most probably read many CVs and personal statements that have the same word choice. Check out this post on LinkedIn for the buzzwords to avoid in 2017.
  6. Let who you are shine through: Your personal statement should reflect clues about your personality. More often than not an employer will interview a potential candidate because he might have read something that interested him other than your professional achievements and experience. This can be anything from a sport, a book, or a volunteer activity that could be of mutual interest.
  7. Be aware of the CV length: There is an unspoken rule that a CV should never exceed 2-3 pages. Try to keep your CV short, but also not too short. Having a CV with 4 or more pages can result in important information not being read.
  8. Pay attention to font and size: Always pay attention to the font and size of your CV and personal statement. Ensure that it has the same font and size throughout the document. Never make your font size below 10 points. Use bold, italics and underline words but be careful not to go overboard with this.
  9. Good presentation goes a long way: There is more to presentation than having the perfect layout, length and font size. A dash of colour or a well-placed border can make your CV stand out from the rest and might be as good as a breath of fresh air, giving the recruiter something appealing to look at for a change.
  10. Name your file: Rename your CV file for each position you apply for via email or online. You can rename the file using your name and job title followed by ‘CV’. It will draw the attention of the recruiter and he/she will be able to find your job application easier.
  11. Trim the excess: Do not waste time and space on listing every achievement or position you have ever had. The recruiter will only be interested in reading information relevant to the position that needs to be filled.
  12. Keywords are very important: It should come as no surprise that in today’s day and age your CV might be read by a software programme before it is even submitted to a human. These programs are designed to look for words and phrases that relate to the job specifications or to the relevant industry. Ensure you do the necessary research and add keywords to your personal statement or CV.

You might feel that landing an interview will take forever, but by making use of these steps, you can definitely improve your chances. We hope that you find these tips helpful and that it will boost your confidence when sending your CV.

GT Scholars can provide you with an experienced mentor to help you start the journey of writing your CV and personal statement as well as applying for a new job or university acceptance.  To find out what other opportunities and events we host for young people, feel free to contact us.

7 Ways to Prepare For an Interview

7 Ways to Prepare For an Interview

University What's new? Young people

There are many times in life when you will find yourself needing to prepare for an interview. It could be your sixth form college interview, university interview or a job interview. So being able to prepare yourself for an interview is a useful and important skill to always have.

Interviews are notoriously difficult to prepare for. Some organisations and companies are kind enough to tell you exactly how or what to prepare, but most places will not do this for you. The whole point of the interview is for them to see how you think, how you apply your skills and talents, or how you react to a situation or scenario. They want to make sure that you will be an asset and a good fit for their college, university or company.

Your aim for the interview is to convince the recruiters that you have the skills, knowledge and experience for the job, while also showing them that you fit the organisation’s culture and work ethic. Here are seven useful ways that you can prepare yourself to reach this aim: 

Do your own research about the college, university or company: The recruiters need to know that you are actually interested in their organisation and not just using them for your own gain. They might ask you direct questions about their organisation or they might ask you more indirect questions. You need to do enough research about the organisation beforehand to make sure you can answer their questions well. Visit the organisation’s website to make sure that you understand what they do, their background and mission statement, and their courses or products that they offer. You can also get more perspective about the organisation by reading up about them in news or trade publications.

Compare your skills and qualifications to the entrance, course or job requirements: Fully analyse the entrance requirements or job description and outline the knowledge, skills or abilities that they list. Make sure that you are suitable for the organisation and that your qualifications match or better what they are seeking. If they list a particular skill, they may want you to demonstrate if you know how to do it, so you should ensure that you have the skill and that you are well-practised in it.

Prepare responses to commonly asked questions: Most interviews have a set list of questions that they are sure to ask, such as what are your strengths and weaknesses, what are your academic or career goals etc. You should prepare your responses to questions like these beforehand so that you can answer them easily. You should also understand that there are different ways to ask the same question, for example, they could ask you about your qualities that are useful to their organisation instead asking about your strengths. Both of these questions can be answered in almost the same way so make sure that you can identify that.

Plan what you are going to wear: Your appearance is your first impression and so you should make sure that they do not rule you out before you even get a chance to tell them about you. It is best to dress smartly in neutral colours, with your clothes clean and ironed and hair combed and out of your face. Be sure that your overall appearance is neat and clean.

Prepare what you need to take to the interview: It is advisable that you plan what you need to take to the interview so that you look prepared. Some organisations will tell you what they want you to bring to the interview, but if not then you should just take the following: at least one copy of your transcripts or CV on quality paper, a notepad or professional binder and pen, a list of references, information you might need to complete an application, and a portfolio with samples of your work if relevant.

Understand and pay attention to nonverbal communication: Nonverbal communication speaks volumes and has a huge influence on your impression and therefore your interview. As soon as you walk into the building, make sure that you are mindful of your nonverbal communication, even in the waiting room. Show that you are confident, but do not appear arrogant. Smile, establish eye contact and use a firm handshake. Sit with good posture and be aware of nervous movements such as tapping your foot. Maintain good eye contact while answering questions – do not look around too much as this will make you seem inattentive. Be aware of your facial expressions and reactions, and try to keep negative reactions internalised. At the same time, do not appear too fake or rigid. Be comfortable and self-assured.

Prepare questions that you can ask them at the end of the interview: Interviews usually end with an opportunity for you to ask questions or clarify any queries. Using your prior research, you can come up with a list of questions that are insightful. Be strategic with questioning and ask questions about information not discussed in the interview or found on the organisation’s website. For example, what do they consider the most important criteria for success in this job, or how will your performance be evaluated, or what is the next step in the hiring process.
This will both impress them and provide you with useful information.

The interview process may seem daunting and difficult, but as you can see, with the proper preparation and prior knowledge, you will be able to succeed in displaying your best qualities for any potential sixth form college, university or employer.

GT Scholars is a social enterprise that provides tutoring, mentoring and enrichment to young people from a range of backgrounds. To find out how we can provide you with a knowledgeable mentor or insightful course to help you prepare for interviews, get in touch with us.

7 Ways You or a Tutor can Prepare Your Child for Oxbridge

7 Ways You or a Tutor can Prepare Your Child for Oxbridge

Parents University What's new?

The University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge (collectively known as Oxbridge) are two of the most prestigious universities not only in the UK but in the world. They have a long history, rich in heritage and tradition, that goes back at least nine centuries. They are globally recognised as being places of focus for learning, culture, and for intellectual debate.

It comes as no surprise that with such high esteem, both the universities are highly sought after by new students from all over the world. It’s extremely competitive to get into Oxbridge. In fact, in 2016 more than 19 000 people applied for the 3 200 undergraduate places at Oxford.

These figures are certainly daunting for students who wish to apply to these universities. It is clear that only the best of the best make the cut, so prospective students need to make sure that they really stand out from the immense crowd of applicants.

Children who aspire to study at Oxbridge will often need extra support from their parents, and that is not just about the funding. So here are seven ways that parents can prepare their bright children for a place at these elite universities.

  • Start preparation early: To study at Oxbridge, it is not just the early bird that catches the worm, but the early prepared bird. Dr Samina Khan, head of student admissions at Oxford, believes that children should start preparing for Oxbridge at the age of 11, and not just when they reach the sixth form. Children need ample time to develop and master their passion for subjects, which will help give them an advantage over others during interviews and applications. Thus, parents should make sure that their aspiring children start preparation early.
  • Provide additional resources: To stand out, prospective students need to show true mastery of and passion for the subject that relates to their desired degree programme. To develop this mastery, students should go over and beyond their high school curriculum. Their parents can support them by funding their specific extracurricular activities, providing them with books and research resources, and allowing them to do voluntary or even paid work. For example, if a student wants to study medicine at Oxbridge, the parent can fund extra science classes, provide them with books and supplies that will increase their skills, and allow them to volunteer at hospitals and other health facilities.
  • Inform them of their choices: It is important that children are not just prepared for Oxbridge, but also prepared for the journey to Oxbridge. Children need to know what they need to achieve and how much work they will need to be put in for them to realise their aspiration. By informing children well in advance of the responsibilities of choosing Oxbridge, parents can avoid building too much of pressure on them during preparation. Pressure on any person has damaging effects, but pressure on children to achieve something has lasting negative effects on their young minds and their future. It is also important to know the difference between informing and discouraging children, as you do not want to discourage a child from having an aspiration.
  • Take a tour of the university: Parents can encourage an interest in Oxbridge by visiting the institutions with their children. As Dr Khan said, children are growing up in an age of Harry Potter, where the traditions and historical appeal of Hogwarts are appreciated and desired. Unlike Hogwarts, Oxford and Cambridge are real places of learning, but they still have the charm and beauty of tradition and magical gothic architecture. Visiting would create a desire that will encourage children to earnestly put their minds to get a place. Follow the link for more information on visiting and tour times for Oxford or Cambridge.
  • Do your own research: The application process is difficult and lengthy. There are forms to fill and documents to get and interviews to prepare for – it is a daunting task for a child. Parents have more experience with filling out forms and doing interviews, so they should find out what they need and start collecting documents well in advance so as to decrease the load on their child. Parents should also do research on funding, scholarships, accommodation and other matters well in advance to prepare accordingly.
  • Get them a mentor: Parents do not know everything. Perhaps they did not go to Oxbridge or they did not go to university at all, so they do not know how to advise their aspiring children. Thus, getting a mentor for their children would do wonders by providing them with all the necessary skills and knowledge. The mentor could be an Oxbridge alumnus or even educated in the field of interest, and could help them with the application process, with resources of interest, or even just some good direction and confidence boosting.
  • Enroll them in a course or workshop: With 19 000 undergraduate applicants, it would make sense that many prospective students are seeking help when applying to Oxbridge. Thus, there are many courses and workshops available that provide valuable assistance such as developing an outstanding personal statement and how to prepare for interviews. These courses and workshops can also provide important insider information and bursary opportunities.

Parents provide a vital support system when their children are applying to any university. This support system becomes even more important when applying to Oxbridge due to the high amount of applicants, which creates a considerable amount of pressure on children. As you can see, there are several ways parents can make an Oxbridge education possible for their child, which can almost guarantee them to have a bright and prosperous future.

GT Scholars knows the importance of preparing students for Oxbridge and wants to be a helpful part of the journey. We provide a one-day course on how to get into Oxbridge which includes working with Oxbridge graduates, admissions professionals and interview professionals that will show your child how to develop an outstanding personal statement and how to choose a degree course for their chosen career. They will also support your child with preparing for interviews and give advice on A-level subjects and grades required for specific universities and specific courses.

Find out more about the course here. We also provide an excellent mentorship programme which employs a variety of well-educated and knowledgeable mentors that will give your child the edge over any other Oxbridge applicant. You can find out more about the mentorship programme here.

Five skills you need to get that scholarship you’ve always wanted

Five skills you need to get that scholarship you’ve always wanted

Improving attainment University What's new? Young people

Getting into university is one thing, but being able to financially survive it is another matter. The gravity of the student loans and the increase in the cost of living at university is enough trouble to think about, adding the fact that it costs more now than what it used to, and with the current economic troubles, parents have suffered over the past years. However, getting a scholarship will allow you to study without the worry of acquiring large student debts and you will be able to graduate without the gloom of it over your positively bright horizon.

To get a scholarship, you first need to start with your research on which scholarship you are applying for. You need to do this at the earliest possible time so that you have more time to prepare what you need. Next, make sure that you are eligible for the scholarship you want to apply for. All your efforts in preparing for the scholarship application will go to waste if you find that you are not eligible for it in the first place. Then, be organised and keep your documents in one place. This will make it easier for you to track your requirements. You should also make sure you have the most recent information and documents. And last but not the least, never miss your deadlines.

While landing yourself a scholarship is no easy task, you can definitely arm yourself with the skills needed to get it. Here are a few of those skills that you can use to get the scholarship that you want.

Academic excellence
Even if you are applying for a sports or arts scholarship, your academic performance will be a determining factor for the approval of your scholarship. For most scholarships, there is a minimum grade to even be eligible to apply. To make your application stand out, make sure that you have a strong and longstanding academic record.

Leadership
There are many leadership development scholarships you can apply for. However, great leadership abilities will make you a good candidate for any scholarship. Being a leader would show that you are mature and capable of handling and delegating responsibilities, while also showing that you are honest, confident, and committed to any given task that you might face. If you find yourself lacking in leadership skills, you can get yourself a coach or mentor. Just as adults and senior business leaders invest in coaching sessions, you can also find a mentor or coach that can help you build yourself into a holistic leader.

Self-reliance
You can also set yourself apart from other applicants by focusing on your ability to be self-reliant. In your application, make sure to add details of your internship and work experience, highlighting that you are a responsible and committed person who can take on any task given to them. You can also include your letters of recommendation from your employers. This will prove that you are an applicant who is serious about your future and that you have the experience to show what you are capable of.

Service
If you have spent time volunteering and you have a passion for community work, then make that a highlight in your application. You can include a recommendation letter from the charities or organisations that you have worked with, and you can make your compassion the main point of your essay. Volunteering and community work show that you want to make a difference to the people and the world around you, which scholarship committees care a lot about too. You can even apply for scholarships that focus on the causes that you are passionate about.

Creativity
If you have more of a flair for the arts, then you can always go for an arts scholarship. If you are a musician, there are also plenty of scholarships for you. Make your talent work for you by making it stand out in your application. Remember that creativity is all about standing out and making an impact, so do it with your application. Make the review committee feel the intensity of your passion for art or music, and give them something that they would never forget.

Finally, when you apply for a scholarship, never let fear get in your way. You might think that the committees reviewing your applications are hard to please, stone-hearted people, but in fact they are just people like you. They just want to know if you have the talent and the capacity to be able to carry out what they represent. It is best to just simply be yourself and show them that you also have a heart that beats with a passion for what they stand for, and that you just want their help to better your education and fulfill your dreams.

GT Scholars is a social enterprise that provides tutoring, mentoring and enrichment to young people between the ages of 11 and 16. We are eager to help young people to achieve good grades, learn valuable skills and gain important insight to get the scholarship that they need. Contact us for more information and you can also have a look at our free to download  21 scholarships, bursaries and awards for young people to find out more about great scholarships opportunities for young people in England.

6 Misconceptions that young people need to address before embarking on a degree or an apprenticeship

6 Misconceptions that young people need to address before embarking on a degree or an apprenticeship

Narrowing the gap Social mobility University What's new? Young people

University debt has now risen to £100 billion in the UK and it’s set to keep rising. Many young people are now looking into alternatives to university. But what happens if you’re not sure which path to take.

There is no reason for anyone to throw themselves into an apprenticeship or go to university just for the sake of going! There are a lot of things to consider. In this blog, we’ll do our best to address some of the typical misconceptions that young people have about apprenticeships.

  • If I do an apprenticeship, I’ll earn less than a graduate. When you’re studying for a degree, you’ll need to pay for your course and for most people, this means taking up a student loan. During an apprenticeship, you get paid to work and gain your apprenticeship certification and you won’t have a student loan to pay off. The reality is that your salary as an apprentice and even beyond your apprenticeship will pretty much always depend on the profession you’ve chosen, the type of apprenticeship you’ve chosen and the company you work with. The same applies for graduates, it will depends on the work-experience you gained before and during your degree, your qualities and what you have to offer, the degree that you studied, the university you attend and the profession you’ve chosen. There are so many variables that it’s almost impossible to say that one is better than the other.
  • An apprenticeship is easier than studying for a degree. Again this is not necessarily true. So many young people believe that doing an apprenticeship instead of a degree is an easy way out. There is a belief an apprenticeship doesn’t require good grades and it’s a safety net that will secure them a well paid job after school and ensure that they are debt free. I’ve seen so many students mess around in their final year of school because they believed that all they needed was 5Cs to get a good apprenticeship. They didn’t attend any revision sessions, hardly prepared for exams and did the bare minimum to get 5Cs at GCSE and who could blame them? Why work so hard if you feel that you have the safety net of an apprenticeship waiting for you. Instead of looking for the easy way out, you should probably take the time to decide on your ideal career and then choose the path that will take you in the right direction.
  • It’s easy to get an apprenticeship with a top company. The reality is that the top apprenticeships and school/college leaver programmes are competitive. Just like graduate programmes, you’ll face a lot of competition. Top companies want top quality candidates so you’d better be prepared to have a brilliant CV and get good GCSEs and/or A-levels if you want to get a job with the highest paying companies. There are some of the more glamorous apprenticeships that will pay £400 per week but most apprenticeships will pay about £200 per week. You only need to take a look online at the apprenticeships on offer for you to fully understand what is available.
  • Doing an apprenticeship means I’ll never have to study again. Unfortunately, this is not true. Most apprenticeships will require some form of assessment or examination as part of the apprenticeship. And of course, even after your apprenticeship your career may still require you to take regular exams or build qualifications if you want to move up the career ladder. Instead of thinking about how to get out of exams, why not look for a way to get better at doing them?
  • Apprenticeships are for people that didn’t get good grades or don’t like studying. Doing an apprenticeship or studying for a degree is something that requires a lot of thought. The decision shouldn’t be based purely on your grades. The real question should be – what are you passionate about? What would you like to do with your life? If the career you want requires a degree – then you’ll need to get good grades, go to a top university and get your degree! If the career you want doesn’t require necessarily a degree eg Accounting, IT or Management – then you’ll need to get good grades and go and work for the best company that you can find that will support you to achieve your career aspirations. If the career you want requires you to go to a specialist Art/Fashion/Music/Dance college – then you’ll need to get good grades so that you can get into the specialist college.
  • I’ve been predicted low grades. I probably won’t get good GCSEs and I’ll have no choice but to do an apprenticeship. Predictions at school based on a range of factors. Even as a teacher I remember being baffled by what the computer spurred out as the predicted grades for my students. The problem is that many students then rest on their laurels believing that there’s just no hope and they’re only as good as the prediction. My view on this is work hard. Don’t give up because your predictions aren’t that great. I’ve met bright students who gave up on themselves at the most important point in their lives and I’ve always wondered what would happen if they put in just a little more effort to get better grades.

If you’re not sure about what you want to do then you should probably take some time out to get work experience in a field that you are interested in before embarking on an apprenticeship or signing up to a degree.

Do your research into universities and the types of degrees that you could study. Meet people that are currently on an apprenticeship and ask them about their experience. You may also want to look into apprenticeship-degrees where you work full time while gaining a degree through your employer and graduating debt free! Just remember that no matter which path you choose – you’ll probably still need to work hard and get good grades by the end of school.

Free download: 21 scholarships, bursaries and awards for young people

Free download: 21 scholarships, bursaries and awards for young people

In The Know Narrowing the gap Resources University What's new?

There are hundreds of scholarships, bursaries and awards offered by charities, large corporations and top universities. We’ve compiled a list of 21 scholarships, bursaries and awards for young people in England aged 14 and above.

1. Lloyds Scholars: To qualify for this scholarship, you have to be accepted to study at one of the Lloyds scholarship partner universities. You’ll also need to have a total household income under £25,000, have a UK fees standing and be on a program that is at least 3 years long. For more information, click here.

2. Kings College K+ Scholarship: This is a programme developed for young students over the age of 16 to help them prepare for university. Applicants are given the opportunity to learn study skills, attend a summer school and get a mentor among other benefits. For more information, click here.

3. The Sutton Trust US programme: This programme is offered to students from financially disadvantaged backgrounds, with a total household income less than £45000. Students must attain 8 As or A*s at GCSE, currently be in Year 12 or equivalent, attend a state school or college and be a British National. They provide a fully paid trip to the USA and help you with preparing for your scholarship application to some of the top universities in the states. For more information, click here.

4. The Jack Petchey Foundation Individual Grants for Volunteering: This grant is on offer to young people between the ages of 11 and 25 who live in London or Essex. They must be volunteering with a UK based organisation and raising at least 50% of the funds required by the project. The award provides up to 50% of the cost of your project and no more than £400 per person. For more information, click here

To download a copy of all 21 scholarships, fill in the short form below.

In the know: Scholarships for young people!

In the know: Scholarships for young people!

In The Know Resources University What's new?

We often get questions from young people at our events regarding scholarship, bursary and award opportunities, available to home students. In response to this, we have compiled a list of some of the most interesting opportunities being offered by various organisations.

Jack Petchey Foundation Individual Grants for Volunteering: This grant is on offer for young people between the ages of 11 and 25 who live in London or Essex. They must be volunteering with a UK based organisation and raising at least 50% of the funds required by the project. The award provides up to 50% of the cost of your project and no more than £400 per person. Read here for more information.

Reuben Singh Scholarship: This is a scholarship offer for entrepreneurs who want to study while running their business. Applicants must have an offer for an undergraduate place and have a running business. The scholarship, which is worth £9,000, will go towards education while you work on your business. Visit the website for more information.

Miranda Brawn Diversity Leadership Scholarship: This scholarship is offered to students between the ages of 14-21 years of age from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds. Founded by Miranda Brawn, who has a background in Investment Banking, Law and has worked as a diversity executive. The offer includes up to £1000, mentoring sessions, CV and career advice. For more information please visit the website.

We hope this is helpful to anyone that’s in need of information on scholarships and awards! The GT Scholars programme is an after-school programme for ambitious young people that would like to achieve top grades at school, get into top universities and enter competitive careers. ‘In The Know’ is our weekly newsletter for parents and carers to receive news about the latest opportunities for their child. Subscribe to ‘In The Know’ here: www.gtscholars.org/subscribe

In The Know: World Health Day!

In The Know: World Health Day!

In The Know University What's new? Young people

Today marks the 67th World Health Day, which aims to draw attention to global health issues. The following are some programmes that offer youngsters, who are interested in healthcare, a glimpse into what the field of medicine entails.

Young Doctors Summer School – Debate Chamber
This summer programme is an introduction to the world of medicine for young students aged 11-14. It combines academic sessions with activities that test and apply the theoretical aspects that they learn. Your child can get the chance to suture a wound or diagnose and offer possible treatment options whilst role-playing or analysing case studies. Additional activities include group work, quizzes and experiments. Read more about this summer programme here.

British Red Cross – Work Experience Initiative
The British Red Cross offers week-long work experience opportunities for young students between the ages of 15 and 18. Your child can gain insight into the different departments within the Red Cross and the work that they do. The placements are available in London during July and August 2017. The application deadline is the 2nd of June 2017 and there are limited places available so for more information, please click here.

Imperial College London – The PreMed Course
A one-day medical career course is on offer from Imperial College London. This course is run by seasoned doctors who provide objective career advice to any young person considering a career in medicine. The course is well suited to 14-18 year-olds who are aspiring doctors or medical practitioners, as applicants are urged to fully investigate what a career in the field is like. The upcoming dates for this course are the 22nd of April 2017 and the 2nd of September 2017. Please read more information about this course here.

If your child is aged 11-16 and you’re interested in joining the tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme, we’ve still got a few spaces left for young people that want to join GT Scholars this term. If you’re interested, you’ll need to register your interest here or give us a call on 02088168066