Students ‘hop’ to Oxford

Posted by on Jun 25, 2014 in News | No Comments

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saltash.net community school and the Saltash Gateway Community Interest Company combined to give Gifted and Talented students a taste of Oxford University, as part of a ‘pathway options day’.

The students, all high-ability students in Year 10, travelled on the ‘Saltash Hopper’ community bus driven by volunteers Derek Pilgrim and Colin Brown, and were accompanied by teachers Adam Killeya and Lydia Hawkins.

At Oxford, students had the chance to look around two different colleges: Exeter College which hosted the event and Corpus Christi where Miss Hawkins’ sister is currently studying Biochemistry. They also visited the spot where three bishops were burned for heresy in 1555-56 (outside Mr Killeya’s old college of Balliol, but a few years before he studied there).

After lunch in Exeter College Hall students had a tour of Oxford including visits to various famous Oxford landmarks, before returning to Exeter College for a sample lecture on lasers.

Mr Killeya, who led the trip, said, ‘Not every student will want to apply to Oxford and Cambridge and that’s fine. What we want to ensure is that those students who have the ability don’t decide not to try simply because they don’t feel they know enough about it; we want to support aspirations and to encourage them to consider it as an option, as something they could do if they wanted to.’

Miss Hawkins added, “We really appreciate the help of the Saltash Hopper team in getting us there and back in a day, which made the trip possible.”

Year 10 student, Peter Martin, said, “It was a very interesting thing to do and I am very glad to have been given the chance to look at such a high ranked university.’  He added, ‘One fact everyone remembered from the lecture is that Lasers* should actually be called Losers** and I have not let my Physics teacher forget this since.’

* Light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation
** Light oscillation by stimulated emission of radiation