Virtual September Open Days offer a taste of College life for Year 12 students
“It is never too early to start thinking about university”
There’s no time like the present for Year 12 students to think about their University application, says the St John’s College Admissions team in the run-up to this month’s Cambridge Open Days.
St John’s has combined its September Open Days and Taster Days to create a lively programme of online sessions designed for prospective applicants just entering their first year of sixth form.
To get a real flavour of life and studying at Cambridge, a selection of short films about different courses and student accommodation will go live on the Open Days and Events page of the College website and on YouTube on Monday 14 September. A filmed presentation called ‘Year 12: what next?’ will be released the same day, providing lots of useful information about what steps can be taken now to best prepare for applying in 2021.
Gaia Lambert, Schools Liaison and Access Officer at St John’s, said: “One of the things prospective students may not realise is that it’s best to start preparing for your applications at the start of Year 12. The key point of a personal statement is demonstrating your interest in a subject and the earlier you start engaging with your subject, the easier it is to write about it.
“Year 12s are only now starting sixth form so they may not be thinking beyond that yet, but it is never too early to start thinking about university. Join us on our Taster and Open Days to find out how best to get ready for making your application next year, and to help decide which subjects to apply for.”
In line with Cambridge Open Days across the University, St John’s is holding its live virtual Open Days and activities through 17 and 18 September. The first day’s programme includes a Medicine introduction talk, Sciences taster sessions, student Q&As, an Admissions talk and a black student panel. In partnership with the JCR, the panel will feature current students and recent alumni and is open to prospective students who are black or mixed ethnicity with black heritage.
Activities the following day include Arts subject tasters, Q&As for students, parents and guardians, a discussion on ‘Why St John’s?’, and the ‘Year 12: What next?’ session.
Events are taking place across Facebook Live and Zoom and pre-registrations are required before Sunday 13 September, after which participants will be allocated sessions. Questions may be put forward in advance using the online forms at the point of booking.
Gaia said: “St John’s is a very welcoming environment which really focuses on the individual and we have lots of Directors of Studies who really care about the students. This is exemplified in the wide provisions we have for the Taster and Open Days, with lots of different taster sessions available alongside other events that people can drop into. We believe that prospective students can get a real taste of the College across the two days, along with lots of useful advice on how to start preparing for their applications.”
This month’s Open Days are the latest in a series of online outreach activities organised by the St John’s Admissions team during the Covid-19 pandemic. “We’ve been holding Admissions Clinics virtually for several months now, which has been a really nice experience. We also had a big series of events with our link area schools at the end of the academic year,” added Gaia. “This is our big launch event for Year 12s and we are looking forward to working virtually with students, taking the opportunities presented by moving our events online and putting on the best programme possible for prospective applicants.”