“The trip was amazing” – Cumbria students visit University of Manchester

This October, students from two schools in Cumbria visited the University of Manchester as part of The Access Project’s enrichment programme.

Approximately 40 students from Whitehaven Academy and Workington Academy in Cumbria travelled to Manchester to tour the campus and find out more about university life.

Through workshops and Q&A sessions, our young people had the chance to speak to University of Manchester students and staff about life as a student. Our students learned more about accommodation, finance, societies, new subjects, and a typical day as a student in Manchester.

One student said: “I personally thought the trip was amazing, my favourite part was being able to go around the campus and see everything the university has to offer. The trip helped me understand what university is like, as this was the first time visiting one”.

Reflecting on the day, Will Ainsworth, North Programme Manager at The Access Project, said: “It was absolutely wonderful to be a part of our Cumbria schools visit to The University of Manchester. The memories of a very early morning and an extremely long coach journey become distant the second you step into a university building and see the students’ eyes exploring their unfamiliar surroundings.

The day was further enriched by two insightful taster lectures and a campus tour on a rare sunny day in Manchester.”

The trip was hosted by the University of Manchester’s School of Arts, Languages and Cultures.

Sonja Bernhard, their Teaching, Learning and Student Experience Coordinator (Outreach) told us: “We really enjoyed working with the team from The Access Project. Our university’s aims fully align with the ambitions of the project: at Manchester we seek excellence, inclusivity and impact in everything that we do. Widening participation in higher education – in particular, enabling fairer access to a Manchester education for talented students from all backgrounds – is central to our values.

“It was a pleasure and a privilege to meet the young people from Workington and Whitehaven Academies and we would be very pleased to work with The Access Project on similar visits in the future.”

Young people are twice as likely to attend top universities after studying with The Access Project. One hour of volunteer tutoring per week can put a student from an under-resourced background on track to a good education, giving them the best chance at social mobility.

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