My Experience at Envision UCL 2024

Introduction

On the 22nd of June this year, I was lucky enough to be invited to Envision UCL at the Cruciform building to listen to alumni of UCL speak about their own professions. This is a programme to inspire year 10 black students to achieve their full potential and explore life beyond secondary school.

The speakers – Mary Sommerlad

The first alumni to address the year 10 students was Mary Sommerlad, who is a consultant dermatologist. Her speech was very insightful for some of the year 10s and myself as a year 11, as it shone a light on how hardworking you have to be to achieve things. Mary was able to take us through her journey through primary to university education, showing how consistency was key in her journey. Despite being very versatile in school and choosing French along science A Levels, she eventually landed on medicine as her dream course: she therefore pursued a career in this and became a dermatologist.

The speakers – Donia Narh

Following Mary’s speech, Donia Narh then came up to present her experience in school, and shared her wisdom on how we should collect gems throughout school. “Gems” relates to extra/super curricular activities that you can take part in to better your CV, such as public speaking or visiting different universities. By taking part in the Envision programme, these year 10s are already collecting gems which will help them get into University and secure job roles. However, Donia Narh also commented on her time at school, where she switched her end goal many times. This showed the students how although being driven by a single goal is great, sometimes our desires will fluctuate.

Donia Narh also went on to speak about Aces Aspire, which drives young people in the right direction to do great things.The year 10s also gained an insight into whether university or other options such as degree apprenticeships was the choice for them, all while they listened to the same relayed messages:these include networking and planning for the future.

The speakers – Myself

Lastly, I got the opportunity to speak to the group of year 10s on the programme, recommending tips on how to succeed in their gcses. Being a year 11 who has just come out of gcses, I wanted to share my own thoughts and experiences to aid the year 10s in their upcoming year. I shared some tips from my most recent article Navigating Year 10: Top Tips for GCSEs. This was a great experience as it allowed me to partake in public speaking, something which I enjoy, as well as give the year 10s an opportunity to speak to someone who had just finished their GCSEs

A tour around the UCL libraries

Lastly, we were able to receive a tour around the libraries of UCL, observing the extensive range of books that they offer – from the arts to the sciences -, as well as getting a feel of the dedication of the students here. They all had their heads down in books and were eagerly working. Also, the almost Romanesque architecture of the building itself, and the abundance of classic sculptures amazed us.

Final Thoughts

Being invited to UCL was an amazing opportunity to not only learn from UCL alumni about careers and making the correct decisions throughout school. I was able to partake in a small section of the Envision UCL programme, and I am sure that the year 10s will gain knowledge on where they want to go and what they want to do after secondary school.

Introduction

On the 22nd of June this year, I was lucky enough to be invited to Envision UCL at the Cruciform building to listen to alumni of UCL speak about their own professions. This is a programme to inspire year 10 black students to achieve their full potential and explore life beyond secondary school.

The speakers – Mary Sommerlad

The first alumni to address the year 10 students was Mary Sommerlad, who is a consultant dermatologist. Her speech was very insightful for some of the year 10s and myself as a year 11, as it shone a light on how hardworking you have to be to achieve things. Mary was able to take us through her journey through primary to university education, showing how consistency was key in her journey. Despite being very versatile in school and choosing French along science A Levels, she eventually landed on medicine as her dream course: she therefore pursued a career in this and became a dermatologist.

The speakers – Donia Narh

Following Mary’s speech, Donia Narh then came up to present her experience in school, and shared her wisdom on how we should collect gems throughout school. “Gems” relates to extra/super curricular activities that you can take part in to better your CV, such as public speaking or visiting different universities. By taking part in the Envision programme, these year 10s are already collecting gems which will help them get into University and secure job roles. However, Donia Narh also commented on her time at school, where she switched her end goal many times. This showed the students how although being driven by a single goal is great, sometimes our desires will fluctuate.

Donia Narh also went on to speak about Aces Aspire, which drives young people in the right direction to do great things.The year 10s also gained an insight into whether university or other options such as degree apprenticeships was the choice for them, all while they listened to the same relayed messages:these include networking and planning for the future.

The speakers – Myself

Lastly, I got the opportunity to speak to the group of year 10s on the programme, recommending tips on how to succeed in their gcses. Being a year 11 who has just come out of gcses, I wanted to share my own thoughts and experiences to aid the year 10s in their upcoming year. I shared some tips from my most recent article Navigating Year 10: Top Tips for GCSEs. This was a great experience as it allowed me to partake in public speaking, something which I enjoy, as well as give the year 10s an opportunity to speak to someone who had just finished their GCSEs

A tour around the UCL libraries

Lastly, we were able to receive a tour around the libraries of UCL, observing the extensive range of books that they offer – from the arts to the sciences -, as well as getting a feel of the dedication of the students here. They all had their heads down in books and were eagerly working. Also, the almost Romanesque architecture of the building itself, and the abundance of classic sculptures amazed us.

Final Thoughts

Being invited to UCL was an amazing opportunity to not only learn from UCL alumni about careers and making the correct decisions throughout school. I was able to partake in a small section of the Envision UCL programme, and I am sure that the year 10s will gain knowledge on where they want to go and what they want to do after secondary school.

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