Cumbria Access Roadshow

Help us to improve access to Oxford by visiting schools in Cumbria!

  • £1,600

    pledged of £1,600

    • 32


    • 0


This project received pledges on Thu 05 Jul 2018


We are a group of Queen’s student ambassadors hoping to visit state schools in our link region of Cumbria, to help raise pupils’ aspirations and demystify what life is like at Oxford. We’ve been very busy supporting Access throughout the year, conducting tours of College and chatting to prospective students, and we’re looking forward to taking what we’ve learned on the road!

What is the roadshow?

Between Tuesday 10th and Friday 13th July, we will visit Cumbrian state schools where we will talk to pupils about the experience of applying to and studying in Oxford. Since the journey between Cumbria and Oxford is so long, many students do not attend open days or student shadowing events, which means that they may have no personal experience to rely on when deciding whether or not to apply here.

“I was hesitant to apply to Oxford when I was a sixth form student because I held so many misconceptions about what it was like to study there. Having an outreach representative answer my questions really changed my impression of Oxford life!”

We have already arranged visits with Y10 and Y12 students from Caldew School, Workington Academy, Kirkbie Kendal School and William Howard School, and we’re excited to get even more schools taking part. We will meet students first hand and talk about just why they should aspire to come to university, how to make a strong application to Oxford, and what the experience of living and studying in Oxford is really like.

Why run a roadshow?

The Queen’s Schools Liaison and Outreach Officer works hard year round visiting schools, however distance and resources can often make it difficult for potential applicants to meet students face to face. It’s important to support access work in Oxford since so many potential students miss the opportunity to study in such an incredible place, simply because they haven’t had the chance to learn more about it.

We want to give students a more accurate impression of what it is like to study here. For students who haven’t been to an open day, much information about Oxford life can be wrong - but we can blast any myths to ensure that the impression they have of Oxford is based on accurate and up-to-date accounts.

We know from feedback given by students attending open days at Queen’s that speaking to current undergraduates is one of the most enjoyable and informative opportunities that we can offer. Speaking directly to undergraduates will give students the opportunity to ask questions they might not otherwise ask, which means that any misconceptions about Oxford life can be resolved. Also, since several of us are originally from Cumbria, it will be encouraging for students to see “success stories” directly from their region.

“Oxford’s outreach programmes were extremely influential in my decision to apply- I found the talks by Oxford students given at my sixth form inspiring and they made me realise that Oxford was a possibility for me.”

Beyond the immediate impact of the roadshow, we will be able to build stronger connections with schools in our link regions. We can use this opportunity to make sure that the schools are aware of ways that they can continue to benefit from outreach initiatives, such as through the new online Access Platform which allows Queen’s undergraduates to connect with students from around the country.

Why donate?

The roadshow is above and beyond what the College does each year. It is something we are doing because we want to share our message more widely. To go ahead, we need £600 for accommodation for the student ambassadors over the week, £300 for travel costs and £300 for food.

Any additional money raised will be put towards an access fund, which could be used to support further outreach projects including any similar roadshow events in the future.

By contributing to the roadshow fund, you will be helping us travel further across the region to meet as many pupils as possible. Remember, with each school we visit, we will hugely increase the number of students we reach, meaning that even a small contribution could make an enormous difference to the project.

“Roadshows can demystify the University so I think they are extremely important!”

We are offering rewards for sponsors, from being named on a sponsor page hosted on the college website, to handwritten letters of thanks and an invitation to a thank you dinner.  Please see the reward tiers to the side of the page to find out more.

Even if you cannot donate, please consider sharing this page so that we can reach a wider audience!

Thank you!