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Sutton Trust Success

By | News

Former Kingswood Academy student, Vinny Crosskill, is one of two Wyke students who have been successful in their Sutton Trust applications. We recently caught up with him to talk all about his amazing achievement.

Tell us why you applied for the Sutton Trust?
I applied for the Sutton Trust US Programme because I like to challenge myself and get myself out of my comfort zone, which this programme would do because moving to and living in a completely different continent brings a lot of changes and challenges. There are a lot of experiences offered, with a lot more opportunities to study abroad and welcome more cultures into my life to better equip myself for employment. University life is so different at liberal arts colleges, as the professors get to know you as an individual, as classes tend to be no bigger than 20.

Where are you hoping to study?
Currently, the front runner is the University of Richmond in Virginia, because it offers great international experiences and accounting as a major which, at the moment, is a necessity for me. I researched it for my video interview when I applied for the Sutton Trust, because it intrigued me the most. However, I don’t have a concrete choice because there are a lot of amazing institutions which the programme introduces you to. What interested me was the fact that there are 55 US colleges that are ranked higher than Durham University, and the Ivy League is actually a sport league, so I’d recommend to anyone that’s applying to come in with an open mind because it’s a really eye-opening experience.

How did you feel when you found out you’d been accepted?
I remember finding out in economics last thing on a Friday and feeling so excited. I felt quite a lot of pride because it’s no easy feat, with over a thousand of some of the best students in the country applying to the programme. Out of those, only 150 get accepted and even fewer go onto step two, which is actually applying. The programme aims to educate you as much as possible without pressuring you into a decision, so you can make the choice that’s the best fit for you. The programme will also heavily support you in your UK applications. There’s a great network of Alums, who help you quite a lot, whether you’re in the US or UK. With the cohort, you’re a part of 150 great people who become like a tight knit family, especially when you’re in America. Cohort members regularly visit one another in the US, which helps a lot with homesickness or any problems you may have.

What are your career aspirations?
Right now, it’s to become a chartered accountant or earn a doctorate in economics. However, the good thing about US institutions is that you can change your major, especially if you’re at a liberal arts college, whereas in the UK you’d have to reapply to change your course. Hearing some of the classes that the colleges offer has really made me think about the career path I want to take going forward.

Overall, I would definitely recommend applying to the programme because even if you choose not to go to step 2, it’s a very educational experience and it teaches you a lot of handy information for applications and CVs. But most importantly, you’ll meet friends that you’ll be close with for the rest of your life.

Thank you for taking the time to talk to us Vinny, we wish you the very best of luck with your future!

For more information about the Sutton Trust, please visit suttontrust.com

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Sarah O'Sullivan

Train to Teach at Wyke

By | Community, Course News, News, News for Parents, On Campus

From September 2021, Wyke will be offering teacher training, pre-service and in-service, part-time, Cert Ed and PGCE courses, awarded by the University of Huddersfield.

Centre manager, Rachel Hitchenor, is really excited to be offering these new teacher training courses and is looking forward to welcoming new students and working closely with the University. The range of pathways on offer reaches out to everyone who is looking to further their career in a sixth form or college setting.

She said, “If you’re already working as a teacher or trainer at a recognised training or educational establishment within the education and training sector (former post-14 sector) or and looking to progress your career, then the in-service PGCE or Cert Ed is the course for you.

If you’re hoping to go into teaching within sixth forms or further education colleges, or you see yourself taking up a career in adult education or informal education roles, then the pre-service PGCE or Cert Ed would suit your needs. You don’t need previous teaching experience, just an industry skill, an appropriate entry qualification and a passion for teaching and training others.”

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be eligible to proceed, following a process of professional formation through the Society for Education and Training to gain Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status. This is the full professional status for teachers in the Lifelong Learning Sector.

High quality teaching is at the heart of Wyke’s success. Recently, the PE, Sports and Dance department won the coveted “FE Teaching Team of the Year” award. This year, the status of the College was confirmed by “The Sunday Times Parent Power Survey” that placed Wyke in the top 2% of providers in the UK.

Wyke is an established provider of teacher training placements. Sarah O’Sullivan completed her first placement at Wyke and now teaches A Level Geography at the College.

She said, “When given the opportunity to complete my 1st PGCE placement at Wyke, I was excited, yet nervous, and most of all curious to see what it would be like as a trainee teacher at a Sixth Form College.

Wyke supported me in this placement immensely- I had a well-structured programme with my mentor and PGCE coordinator and I felt part of the team straight away. I was given the opportunity to observe teachers from a variety of subjects and got invaluable teaching advice from both well experienced teachers and other recently qualified teachers too. The placement allowed me to put the introduction to pedagogical theories into practice and try different strategies in the classroom to challenge myself in a supportive environment.

Feedback from observations is always constructive and encouraging, which has consequently improved my confidence, and competency in teaching. Completing the PGCE led to me gaining employment in the organisation, where I am currently continuing to develop professionally and gaining a deeper understanding into teaching and learning through the NQT programme.”

If you have any questions or would like further information then please email rachel.hitchenor@wyke.ac.uk or phone 01482 346347. If you would like to apply then please email or phone to discuss the most appropriate route.
To apply via our current vacancies portal https://vportal.wyke.ac.uk/ by 30th June 2021 if possible.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Lucy Tessier

Max the Gap

By | Course News, Music, News, News for Parents

If you think taking a gap year is a chance to sit back and relax, think again!

Former A level Music student, Lucy Tessier is maximising her time by working as a freelance journalist and copywriter. By combining her talent for writing and passion for the indie music scene, Lucy’s work has been published across a range of digital media platforms.

Over that last 7 months, Lucy has been scouting new talent for magazines to promote, pitching new features, interviewing bands and artists for articles, writing album and single reviews and ghost-writing content for blog posts.

Next year, Lucy will begin her undergraduate life, studying BA(Hons) English Language and Literature at the University of Leeds.

Lucy’s work has been published on Gigwise.com and Soundspheremag.com. To get a flavour of her critical ability and engaging writing style, read her article on Wolf Alice https://www.gigwise.com/features/3396348/what-a-wolf-alice-comeback-means-to-the-band-s-fans

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Journey to Number 10

By | Course News, French, German, Spanish

Former Wyke and Winterton student, Rebecca Johns, has recently started working as a communications officer for 10 Downing Street after taking a varied career path inspired by her love of languages.

During her time with us, Rebecca studied French alongside Biology, Chemistry and Maths. She had clear aspirations to become a doctor, but chose to study French after deciding that she wanted to keep other options and career pathways open to her.

She said: “…it was always another point of interest that I have, and it was something different that universities and employers look for on CVs. It shows a really good skillset and taps into a bit of a different learning style compared to what I was going to be studying.

“The most enjoyable thing about learning a language is that you don’t just learn about the language but also about the culture, through books and films that you wouldn’t normally come across.”

Upon completing her studies at Wyke, Rebecca went on to study biomedical science, but soon realised that becoming a doctor was not the right career path for her. She soon moved on to looking at the different options that were available to her. During her time at university in Liverpool, she spent two summers working as an au pair in Madrid, an experience which she credits her language studies for. After graduating, Rebecca moved to China for a year and studied Mandarin, after securing a scholarship with the British Council.

She said: “I didn’t think they’d pick me because I studied a STEM subject and not a language at university. It’s another reason why I’m so glad I did French at A Level, because I think it showed that I did have language skills.”

Upon returning to the UK, Rebecca joined an events company, producing various business events and working her way up to become a project manager, which allowed her to utilise her language skills when producing international events. She has also worked for Just Eat as an account executive, which included managing a portfolio of restaurants and working with them on social media campaigns.

“Working for a big tech company is completely different to events, and I think that when you study a language you can show that you’ve got versatility especially if you study it alongside other subjects.”

At the beginning of March, Rebecca joined 10 Downing Street as a communications officer for the Prime Minister’s office. It is something that she has wanted to do and hopes to move on to work for the Foreign Office in the future.

What advice does Rebecca have for upcoming students?

“Be organised from the beginning and revise, revise, revise! It will make everything so much easier.

“It’s taken me two and a half years to get to where I want to be, but none of it is a regret because I’ve have such good experiences and gained so many skills from doing the different jobs. I thought I wanted to be a doctor, and I knew a year or two into university that I didn’t want to follow that career path. So don’t think that what you study at A Level means that you have to follow a certain career path.

“I’d always advise people to study a language because it gives you that little bit of flexibility and shows that you have a different skillset.”

Watch Rebecca talk about her experiences of Wyke, university and work on our YouTube channel https://youtu.be/SXOoergvIsQ

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Careers Newsletter

By | News

Welcome back, we hope you have had a great Easter break.

We have lots happening over the next few months, so please make sure you’re checking the Careers Teams page for all the latest updates and information about apprenticeships, virtual work experience vacancies, guest speakers and more.

You can read the latest edition of the Careers newsletter here.

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Joseph Harling

Golden Opportunity

By | Awards, Course News, Mathematics, News, Physics

Congratulations to Joseph Harling for winning a Gold award at this year’s Physics Olympiad.

In fact, 2021 has been a great year for our Physics department. Stuart Lyon, Head of Physics, is really happy with the performance of the first year students. “Overall, the college collected one gold, three silver and one bronze. Some of the best results that Wyke has ever achieved”.

This prestigious competition is administered by The University of Oxford and provides an exciting opportunity for students to stretch their problem solving skills and apply fundamental physical principles to novel situations.

For Joseph, who participates in the College’s Flyer and Oxbridge programmes, this award will be a valued addition to his university statement. After Wyke, he is aiming to study at a Russell Group, with an aim to develop an academic career.

To discover more about the benefits of this competitive and Joseph’s future plans, visit our YouTube channel.

Sociology named Centre of Excellence

By | Course News, Sociology, Train to Teach

Wyke Sixth Form College’s Sociology Department are delighted to be named a ‘Centre of Excellence’ as part of an initiative with the Doncaster New Collaborative Learning Trust.

The initiative aims to enhance students’ learning by establishing networking links for teachers to share best practice and bring fresh ideas to the classroom.

Throughout this half term, our Sociology department are delivering a bespoke CPD training programme for teachers at New College Doncaster, New College Pontefract and New College Bradford.

The first session, led by Wyke’s Head of Sociology and Psychology Catherine Eariss and Sociology Teacher Mike Skues took place this week with a focus on Effective Questioning. The session was really well received by staff across the group and helped to facilitate valuable discussions in this area.

Excited by the project, Catherine had the following to say; “We are delighted and honoured to be facilitating the development of Sociology teaching across the Doncaster New Collaborative Learning Trust. This is an excellent opportunity to network and share outstanding teaching and learning strategies in Sociology.”

Sociology Network Coordinator, Rebecca Prescott-Mail said, “I am thrilled to be working with Wyke College as part of the Sociology Network for teachers across Doncaster. Our first session, led by Catherine and Michael, on Questioning was engaging, informative and full of practical strategies that teachers can use in their classrooms. I can’t wait for the next!”

Wyke is extremely proud of our Sociology department, not only for their academic success but for the fantastic range of enrichments open to students beyond the classroom including an exciting external lecture programme and a series of fascinating trips.

We hope that our contribution to this project will be of great benefit to both staff and young minds.

erin ambulance

Pre-Hospital Care Programme

By | Applied Science, Biology, Chemistry, Community, Course News, Health & Social Care, News, Uncategorised

Now in her second year of medical school, former Wyke science A level student, Eric McCabe has been busy volunteering on the Pre-hospital care programme, attending Category 1 and 2 medical emergencies such as cardiac arrests, unconsciousness and chest pains primarily in Hull. Additionally, her team had been further trained to assess patients who had fallen down and assist them in getting back on their feet.

The Hull York Medical School (HYMS) Pre-hospital care programme, in collaboration with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service offers medical students at HYMS further educational experience in the field of pre-hospital medicine.

Last year, Erin and the team of 9 other HYMS medical students attended 188 incidents, ranging from cardiac arrests and diabetic emergencies to falls and fractures. Altogether, the team volunteered 900 plus hours of their time to help the local community.

Watch this short video interview on Wyke TV to find out more about Erin’s experiences. https://youtu.be/89Tup43wnQA

James Hendry

Enjoying my Life and Music

By | Awards, Course News, English, German, Music

From Winifred Holtby Academy to Wyke, from Wyke to the Royal Northern College of Music, from RNCM to the Royal Opera House and more. Former A level Music student, James Hendry has achieved so much since leaving college. He is now working in Hannover, Germany, as Principle Conductor for the country’s state opera house. With so many questions to ask, we are thankful to James for keeping in touch, to share his Wyke highlights and to offer some excellent advice to our current students.

What are your best memories of Wyke?

My best memories of Wyke must be the seasonal concerts we did at the end of each term. When I was a student at Wyke, the college had a really great choir made of students and also staff members. It was a great way to mix with other people who didn’t study the same subjects, as everyone was welcome to come and sing. I would also say that I made some excellent friends at Wyke, and I wouldn’t be able to explain every one of the memories otherwise I would have to write a book.

How did your Wyke studies help shape your future?

The music department at Wyke has always been known for its high standards. Wyke gave me a great grounding in my musical studies, and my other subjects included English Literature and Language which really complimented my musical studies. Wyke also helped me grow as a person into an adult whom was responsible for my own learning and my own future prospects, this must be the most vital thing that Wyke gave me. It enabled me to go to university with a clear idea of what I wanted to achieve and a focus that was self-driven.

What advice would you give our current students?

Take every opportunity that the college gives you. Try something different and challenge yourself whether that be joining a musical group/lunchtime club, sports or drama. Do something outside of your subjects to give you a balance. Also, set your goals and don’t give up on them, but remain open to the twists and turns that may come along the way that may lead you down an altered path, that can be jarring but also very exciting. When I was at Wyke I didn’t think I would be working in Hannover, Germany as the Principle Conductor for the State Opera. I knew I was interested in working with people and singers but conducing was something that came much later for me. It was a path that I explored and it worked out for me, you have to be willing to take the chances.

Describe your time at Royal Northern College of Music?

I had a great time at the RNCM, first I studied Solo Piano and gained a first class Honours degree, I then went onto do a master’s degree there in repetiteur skills which I passed with distinction. RNCM was an extremely exciting place to be with many opportunities to take part in and also see a wide range of music and other performances. Manchester as a city is the best place to be a student! I worked extremely hard at the RNCM and was constantly busy both with my own studies but also playing for other peoples lessons on the piano or conducting local student theatre groups. RNCM gave me not only the skills but also the contact to the people in the music business.

Discuss the highlights of your professional life and the awards you have received.

I was lucky enough to get a full scholarship to study for my masters at RNCM, otherwise it really wouldn’t have been possible. I then went onto the prestigious Jette Parker young artists programme at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden. I would say my time at the ROH is one of my highlights so far, Working with Antonio Pappano, who was a great mentor, really inspired me and taught me so much, but everyone who I worked with there was absolutely fantastic both on and off the stage, it really is a place of the highest possible creative standards.

Other highlights would include making my debuts with ENO and Opera North and now gaining the post of Erster Kapellmeister at the Staatsoper Hannover. My awards include being the winner of the degree category of the British Education awards for the amount I achieved during my master’s degree, and most recently being made an Associate of the Royal Northern College of Music. Of course receiving awards is great, but for me I am just doing my thing and enjoying my life and music.

 

Spotlight on Chemistry: Tom Parsons

By | Applied Science, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, Train to Teach

Next up in our British Science Week subject spotlight is chemistry teacher Tom Parsons. We asked him about his enthusiasm for the subject and why becoming a chemistry teacher was the career path for him.

What interests you most about chemistry?
Chemistry is fascinating as it really explains how the world around us works – combining the more applicable parts of physics and the more in-depth aspects of biology. It is the perfect science to understand the best bits of how the world works and gives greater meaning to many of the processes that take place around us.

What can upcoming students expect to gain from studying chemistry?
Chemistry is that is incredibly diverse. In chemistry, students can develop their skills in multiple areas – from mathematical skills to how to use glassware properly. Overall, students will gain confidence in a large range of areas that produce a competent scientist – as well as being a good cook!

How do you use chemistry in your everyday life?
I use concepts of thermodynamics when I open a window to cool a room, I take advantage of decades of drug development and research whenever I use an Ibuprofen pill, I use solubility of tea in water whenever I use a teabag. Chemistry is all around us, always taking place and increasing the understanding of these processes helps us understand the world around us.

Do you have a favourite element or equation?
Boron, without a doubt. Used in rocket fuel and in drug synthesis, it has a whole range of uses and produces a lovely green flame.

Who is a chemist you admire and why?
Linus Pauling. He made great advancements in the chemical field, in areas such as quantum mechanics and protein function. He was also awarded the Nobel Peace Prize (as well as a Nobel Prize for Chemistry) for his work against the use of nuclear weapons. He was not only a great chemist, but a good man too.

British Science Week runs from the 5th – 14th March 2021, visit britishscienceweek.org for more information.

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