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Opportunities abound - carpe diem

There are lots of opportunities for GCA students to learn from professionals, gain work experience and develop their academic skills – competitions, work placements, mentoring schemes, master classes, tasters, university visits and residentials, summer schools. Many are offered through GCA but some determined students just use their brains to research opportunities and their feet to get out there and make an impression.

We'll be posting details of opportunities open to GCA students on this page as we find out about them. Keep checking and see Mr Baxter for more details on any opportunity.

Last updated December 19 2017


Oxford University - Oxford African and Caribbean Society - for these three opportunities please see Mr Baxter 
Shadowing Day (February 2018)
Participants: Year 12
Students are invited to visit Oxford for a day, shadowing a current undergraduate who is studying their chosen subject or similar. This day includes a tour of Oxford colleges, lunch and workshops where the application process is explained. The day also includes Q&As sessions, both for current ACS members and members of Oxford University Admissions Office, who come down to support the programme. This is an application-based programme. Click here to apply: https://goo.gl/forms/xFqPDJ3vvwX5brL92
Visions workshops (March-April 2018)
Participants: Year 9-11
This includes a series of workshops - either held in a school or a firm - firm tours and a follow up event later in the year. Here, the focus is on encouraging students to engage more meaningfully and more positively with the school and work environment. The participants for this are selected entirely at the discretion of the schools invited.
AAC (July 2018)
Participants: Year 12
Students are invited to a London firm for the day. The day includes a number of talks, panels and discussions, lunch and subject-specific sessions. The aim of AAC is to encourage young people to understand, value and utilise their cultural capital regardless of whether they'd like to apply to Oxford or not. From here, AAC aims to cultivate long-term relationships with students and hold a number of follow up sessions (both in person and online) to provide support and advice following A level results day. This is an application-based programme. Click here to apply: https://goo.gl/forms/IUIwp6MhRR4NjIFo2



UCL Futures in Finance Spring School

The Futures in Finance Spring School is designed for Year 12 students who are considering a career in the financial sector, but want to study something other than finance or business at university. This non-residential, four day programme provides participants with the opportunity to attend a number of subject tasters and careers workshops showcasing alternative routes in to finance, develops students' study skills, and gives students the opportunity to find out what studying at a Russell Group university is really like. 

Free online courses from AccessHE

AccessHE Online courses are designed for learners in Year 9 upwards. After registering, students will have a choice of nine fully online courses in subjects ranging from Law to Photography, plus courses to introduce them to university and support independent study. Most of the courses will take approximately 2 hours to complete in total, and students can study sessions at a time that suits them. Once they have completed a course, they will receive a Certificate of Completion.

UCL Envision

Envision@UCL is a series of one-day-events for young African and Caribbean women, in Years 10-12, interested in learning more about university and future career options. Envision@UCL is free to attend, and lunch will be provided (travel costs will also be covered, if required). Come along to experience fun taster lectures, interesting workshops, and more! Our next Envision@UCL takes place on Thursday 15th February 2018.


UCL Gateways Conferences

In February and July 2018, UCL will be holding a series of Year 12 conferences, each investigating a theme that's relevant to how we see the world today. These conferences are designed to give a taste of what studying at university is like, as well as to encourage deeper insight into an interesting and current topic. Students who attend will also receive helpful information about applying to competitive universities, and will have the opportunity to meet current students and members of academic staff. 


Click on this link


for an application form for the Engineering Spring School taking place at Queen Mary University of London from 12 - 16 February 2018 (half term).

This programme is only for students in Year 12, who are studying Maths A level and either Chemistry or Physics A level, and who are on target to achieve all Bs or above. 

It should take approximately 20-30 minutes to complete this form. Please prepare all of the information below before you begin. It is not possible to save the form and return to your answers at a later date.


You will need the following information to complete this form: 


  • The name and email address of a teacher or member of staff at your school/college who will support your application and confirm your expected grades 
  • Some information about your family that you may need to ask your parent/carer about (Widening Participation criteria
  • 300 words explaining why you would like to take part in the programme (for example details of your ambitions and relevant work experience)
The deadline for applications (from students and their supporting teachers) is Monday 4 December 2017 9am 


Visit UCL Days

In the New Year, applications for 2018 Visit UCL Days will go live. Click the link above now to register your interest and receive first notice when applications open. Visit UCL Days are fun, interactive full day visits to UCL. Students will have the chance to attend fascinating taster lectures, explore the campus and hear from students on what life is like at UCL.


The Step into the NHS schools' competition is back.

Prizes for Year 8 and 9 students, include a tablet or a £50 Amazon voucher.

Competition entries must be received by 31 January 2018.

Students are challenged to research and select one of the 350 plus careers available within the NHS. Once selected, they create materials to promote it, starting with a job description to demonstrate their understanding of the role followed by a fun and lively job advertisement to appeal to other people their age. Students can enter individually or in teams of up to four.

Read more here:





SOAS Scholars: Thinking Globally

SOAS Scholars is a project that will take place across the following 5 Saturdays, from 10am to 4pm, at SOAS University of London, WC1H 0XG (near Russell Square)
October 14th, February 3rd, November 4th and 25th,  March 3rd

During the project, you will:
• Explore subjects in interactive sessions with SOAS students

• Experience masterclasses with SOAS lecturers

• Find out more about university

• Develop the skills to do well in your current and future studies

• Be mentored by a SOAS student in an e-mentoring project

• Identify personal goals and work towards them

• Think globally, and enjoy yourself!

Get all the details here:


ESRC Photographic Competition - The Bigger Picture


The challenge is to take a photo which shows 'the bigger picture' of society today, where you live or in the wider world. How do things like politics, education, climate change, healthcare, technology, migration, poverty affect you or others?  Your photo should fall into one of five competition categories. In addition to your image you need to supply an imaginative title and explain the social science behind it in a supporting statement of up to 100 words.

This year social media entries to the competition are invited allowing you to submit up to a further three photographs via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, using the hashtag #esrcphoto.

You will be able to enter the competition from 1 September 2017 until 15 December 2017.