Spotlight on: University College London

Max Rees, second year medical student at UCL, tells us all about what it’s like to study at the prestigious university and offers some top tips for current Seren students:

“I knew pretty much from a young age that I wanted to study Medicine, but never thought I’d be able to get the grades. Nevertheless, I researched into universities and came across UCL and I instantly fell in love with: the buildings, the locations, and what the university stood for… a university who was built upon accepting students due to merit and not background. Even now as a second-year student, I’m still in awe walking through the campus.

 

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“There is so much more to UCL than just its appearance however. The student life is very active with there being such a large Students’ Union. This provides such a great opportunity to try new things or continue with your hobbies and extra-curricular activities you were involved with before university. As well as this, it gives you an opportunity to make friends outside of your course, who share other common interests as you.

“As a medical student, my week consists of: tutorials, seminars, lectures and lab sessions. Each providing a totally different way of learning, with lectures teaching you the information and knowledge required for the course, and seminars and tutorials allowing you to discuss what you’ve learnt in more detail, helping you see things in alternative ways of thinking. Lab sessions include: practical sessions, computer-aided lessons, and anatomy dissection/prosection. All of these allow you to put what you’ve learnt into practice, or to visualise what you’ve learnt (especially for anatomy). Alternating between different teaching styles really helps with understanding and helps you to realise the things you don’t understand as much.

“With the university being in such a central location, it’s so easy to go for a walk and sight see whenever you have a break from lectures or revision. I feel like this, along with being a member of different societies, really helps me to de-stress. You have the hustle and bustle of a big city on your fingertips which makes London such an exciting place to live, and you’ll find that there’s always a new bit of the city that you’ve never seen before!

“UCL offer so many Open Days for prospective students and most of these are run by present students which is really nice because you get the chance to speak to someone first-hand on how they’ve experienced university life, and what their favourite things about the university are. Once you’ve applied, and have been offered a place/interview, you are usually invited to a Department Open Day so that you can get a taste of what you’ll be studying. This is very helpful because it also makes you familiar with the building, and the style of teaching before you begin studying.

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“Being a member of the Seren Network, I learnt so much from the individual sessions put on for my subject choice. It is a super-curricular activity and helps you to learn beyond what you would in the classroom. I was able to discuss this in my personal statement and give the reasons as to why learning things that were medicine-based really interested me. It was an opportunity I, otherwise, wouldn’t have had if I wasn’t a part of it. As well as this, some sessions really highlighted the important of medical ethics, and helped you to begin thinking more holistically about certain topics. This really helped when it came to university interviews. Another aspect of Seren Network are the trips to visit certain universities which helps you to consider applying to other universities that you didn’t think of previously, and it can also change your mind about a university that you thought you really wanted to apply to.

“To conclude this, granted, a very long blog (apologies for this… I do tend to babble on) I just wanted to give you a few tips for both Year 12 and Year 13:

If you’re in your first year of sixth form or college, focus on trying to get relevant work experience and do some extra reading on things that interest you. These will really help when writing your personal statement because you can home in on the skills you’ve learnt and developed by doing so.

If you’re in Year 13, and are in the process of applying, don’t stress too much and don’t let not hearing back from your choices distract you from your school studies. It can be quite a stressful year, so try to find an activity that helps you to relieve the stress.”

Everything you need to know about: Mindfulness

Simon Jones, Head of Policy and Influencing at Mind Cymru, tells us all about mindfulness and tips for becoming more mindful in everyday life.  

Mindfulness has become a popular way to help people manage their day to day wellbeing, with many apps and books available to teach you the techniques. It’s a technique you can learn which involves making a special effort to notice what’s happening in the present moment (in your mind, body and surroundings) – without judging anything. It has roots in Buddhism and meditation, but you don’t have to be spiritual, or have any particular beliefs, to try it.

It aims to help you:

  • Become more self-aware
  • Feel calmer and less stressed
  • Feel more able to choose how to respond to your thoughts and feelings
  • Cope with difficult or unhelpful thoughts
  • Be kinder towards yourself

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The way we think (and what we think about) can affect how we feel and act. For example, if you think or worry a lot about upsetting past or future events, you might often feel sad or anxious. The theory behind mindfulness is that by using various techniques to bring your attention to the present (usually focusing on your body and breathing), you can:

  • Notice how thoughts come and go in your mind. You may learn that they don’t have to define who you are, or your experience of the world, and you can let go of them.
  • Notice what your body is telling you. For example, tension or anxiety can often be felt in your body (such as in a fast heartbeat, tense muscles or shallow breathing).
  • Create space between you and your thoughts, so you can react more calmly.

Mindfulness helps people observe the way they think and feel about their experiences, whether good or bad. Mindfulness can help by increasing your awareness of your thoughts and feelings, managing unhelpful thoughts, and by developing more helpful responses to difficult feelings and events.

Some people find it can help to manage their depression, anxiety and stress. In particular it can help if you:

  • Struggle with negative thoughts and feelings that you would like to have more control over
  • Find it hard to switch off and relax
  • Worry a lot about events you cannot control
  • Need a way to reduce stress

If you find it difficult to get any free time, then mindfulness or relaxation techniques can help you give yourself the break you need.

Many people assume mindfulness and meditation are the same thing — but are there other strategies for being more mindful, outside of meditating:

  • Mindful eating, which involves paying attention to the taste, sight and textures of what you eat.
  • Mindful moving, walking or running. Notice the feeling of your body moving. You might notice the breeze against your skin, the feeling of your feet or hands against different textures on the ground or nearby surfaces, and the different smells that are around you.
  • Mindful colouring and drawing. Focus on the colours and the sensation of your pencil against the paper, rather than trying to draw something in particular. You could use a mindfulness colouring book or download mindfulness colouring images.

Eve Price, a current Seren student, says that wellbeing is a key priority for her and because of this has a set self-care routine: “I believe it’s very important to set a time in the evening when I stop doing work, to give myself the chance to switch off, followed by a set bed time to make sure that I get enough sleep. In order to reduce stress, I find it really useful to write to-do lists and plan the following day the night before. This includes how I’m going to use my free lessons and what work I’ll be doing the next evening.”

To find out more about mindfulness, visit: https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/drugs-and-treatments/mindfulness/#.XD8Aelz7SUk

 

Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship 2019- all your questions answered

 

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Last month, we announced some exciting opportunities to study in the US this summer, including at Harvard and Yale Universities.

This blog answers all your questions about the Harvard opportunity. For further information about Yale, please visit this blog.

Remember: you may apply for a place on both the Harvard Summer School and Yale Young Global Scholars Programme (YYGS) but you will only receive Seren funding for one of these, should you be successful.

For students who apply for both: places for Harvard will be announced before YYGS.  Therefore, if you are successful in being offered a place at Harvard and YYSG you will automatically be discounted for Seren funding for the YYGS programme. You may still attend YYGS if successful but will need to fund this yourself as this will be outside of the YYGS Seren partnership.

Seren applicants to both Yale Young Global Scholars and Harvard Summer School in 2019 will need the following forms:

  1. Sign Up Form for 2019 Seren International Summer Programme Workshops
  2. Question Submission Form for 2019 Seren International Summer Programmes
  3. Scholarship Application Form for 2019 Seren International Summer Programmes

 

Overview

The Seren Network has established a scholarship with the Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program at Harvard University, USA.

In 2019, the Seren Network will support up to 5 Seren students to participate in the Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program at Harvard University, USA.

For five Seren students, the Welsh Government will provide a scholarship worth $4,700 per student.

The Harvard Pre-College Program is an immersive, collaborative, and transformative residential experience.

Alongside peers from around the world, you’ll thrive in a dynamic and supportive academic environment.

Through the Harvard Pre-College Program, you’ll be introduced to college life as you attend challenging classes, live on campus, and enjoy fun excursions and activities.

You’ll have the opportunity to learn without limits, live at Harvard and thrive outside the classroom.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. How do I find out more about the Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program? 

To find out more about the Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program please click on the following link:

https://www.summer.harvard.edu/high-school-programs/pre-college-program

  1. How do I apply to the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program?

All students should follow the application process on the Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program website. Please click on the following link:

https://www.summer.harvard.edu/high-school-programs/pre-college-program/admissions

To be eligible for the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship you must also complete the Seren International Summer Programme Scholarship Application Form at the following link:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/fyoq5d

  1. What is the deadline for applying to the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program?

The closing date for applications to the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College program 2019 is Friday, February 1, 2019 at 5pm GMT.

To apply, go to:

https://www.summer.harvard.edu/high-school-programs/pre-college-program/admissions

  1. What if I miss the deadline?

If you miss the application deadline, your application to Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program will not be considered.

All parts of the application must be complete for consideration for admission.

  1. Who should apply to the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program?

Harvard Summer School Pre-College 2019 program is open to applications from anybody who meets the eligibility criteria described on the Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program website.

Please see the following link for details:

https://www.summer.harvard.edu/high-school-programs/pre-college-program/admissions

However, the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship is only available to Seren Network students currently in Year 12 or the first year of A Levels at college if attending a further education college.

The application process is highly competitive so only the strongest applicants will be offered admission.

The Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program is designed to challenge top performing high school students with fast-paced, university-level material. Prior to arriving at Harvard, students are required to do preparatory reading and during the program will spend the majority of each day in lectures, seminars, and small-group discussions.

The academic work in the program is intense and each session covers a wide variety of material in two weeks. Students must also be mature and able to engage respectfully and civilly in discussions over controversial intellectual, moral, and political issues.

  1. How long is the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program?

The Harvard Summer School Pre-College program is two weeks long, with sessions commencing from mid-June through to the end of July.

  1. Would I be travelling to Harvard independently or would someone be with me?

The 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program has different start dates ranging from mid-June through to late-July.

As a result, there will not necessarily be a designated party of Seren Network students or representatives travelling together.

Students applying should be prepared to travel independently and this should be a consideration before applying.

Of course, any Seren students admitted to the same session are welcome to travel together and Seren will endeavour to help facilitate this where possible, but this cannot be guaranteed.

  1. What does the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship cover? 

Tuition for each session of the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program is $4,700 USD (including $100 for health insurance).

The scholarship includes all programme costs.

This includes your instruction, housing on one of Harvard’s historic residential colleges, three meals per day, programme-related activities, and health insurance.

Travel is not included in program tuition.

  1. How likely is it that my traveling costs will be covered?

The $4,700 USD Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship does not cover traveling expenses.

The Seren Network, will work with successful students to raise funds to support travel costs.

  1. As a Seren student, will I be guaranteed a position in the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program?

No, Seren cannot guarantee the success of any individual application to Harvard Summer School.

Harvard Summer School’s application process is highly competitive.

Whilst the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship is available for up to five Seren students in 2019, the standard of applications must still be high enough to be worthy of an offer of admission independently of the scholarship, so only the strongest applications will be offered a space.

Applications will be considered by the Harvard Summer School admissions team and final decisions for admission to Harvard Summer School’s Pre-College Program will be made by the Harvard Summer School.

  1. How will the Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program know that Im a Seren student and how do I notify them?

You must complete the Seren International Summer Programme Scholarship Application Form at the following link:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/fyoq5d

You must also inform your Seren hub coordinator of your application to YYGS. Your coordinator is required to provide a final list of applicants from their hubs. This final list will be submitted to YYGS as the final list of Seren-eligible applicants for the YYGS summer school.

You should also mention your membership of Seren within your application.

As well as demonstrating an applicant’s success in gaining admission to this exclusive network, this will draw an application to the attention of admissions staff at Harvard Summer School who are expecting applications from Seren students.

  1. When will I be notified whether my application to the 2019 Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program has been successful or not?

Applicants will be notified electronically of admissions decisions by 25th February 2019.

  1. Can students who are not members of The Seren Network apply?

Harvard Summer School is open to applications from anybody who meets the eligibility criteria described on the Harvard Summer School website.

Please see the following link for details:

https://www.summer.harvard.edu/high-school-programs/pre-college-program/admissions

However, the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship is only available to Seren Network students who are successful in their applications to the Harvard Summer School’s Pre-College Program in 2019 and who have NOT previously attended a paid summer school in the US as part of a Welsh cohort. Students who have benefitted from a scholarship, or supported financially by their unitary authority, or the welsh Government are not eligible for funding for 2019.

The application process is highly competitive and so only the strongest applicants will be made an offer of admission. 

  1. Do I need to apply for financial aid portion in my application to Harvard Summer School?

 No.

Seren Network applicants do not need to apply for financial aid as part of their application to Harvard Summer School’s Pre-College Program to be eligible for the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship which will be given to up to five successful applicants from the Seren Network in 2019. 

  1. How do I pay the $75 application fee? Is this covered by the scholarship?

Ordinarily, all applicants must pay the $75 application fee.

Harvard Summer School will waive the application fee if it would constitute a significant financial burden for the student’s family.

All Seren applicants to the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship in 2019 must complete the Seren International Summer Programme Scholarship Application Form at the following link:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/fyoq5d

In order to gain a fee waiver, you must indicate that the fee would constitute a significant burden to you or your family.

Then, you will receive an Application Fee Code to include in you Harvard Summer School application in the same section where you indicate your membership of Seren.

Students and families who can afford the $75 application fee should not indicate that they need an application fee waiver.

Applicants must not share Application Fee Codes with other applicants.

Applicants found to be doing so could be automatically disqualified from being eligible for the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship in 2019.

  1. I have more questions relating to Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program, where should I go?

Applicants should look out for information from their Seren hub coordinators and the Seren Network Facebook page about in-person and Facebook Live information sessions and workshops about 2019 Seren International Summer Programmes happening in January 2019.

Please see the following link to sign up to a workshop about the international summer programmes supported by Seren in 2019:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/feLnI5

If you’re a Seren student, please submit all questions relating to the Seren-Harvard Summer School Scholarship in 2019 via the following link:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/cB3obD

If an applicant has any technical difficulties, they should email:

precollege@summer.harvard.edu

(and cc liam.rahman@aya.yale.edu on the correspondence)

You can also email – Liam Rahman, at liam.rahman@aya.yale.edu or – Manon Charles, at manon.charles@equal.international.

Applicants can also seek guidance from their school’s university guidance counsellors and Seren hub coordinators.

We do, however, advise that guidance in this FAQ document and from the Harvard Summer School website is followed and prioritised above other advice you might receive.

Seren-Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS) Partnership 2019 – all your questions answered

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Last month, we announced some exciting opportunities to study in the US this summer, including at Yale and Harvard Universities.

This blog answers all your questions about the Yale opportunity.

For further information about Harvard, please visit this blog.

Remember: you may apply for a place on both the Harvard Summer School and Yale Young Global Scholars Programme (YYGS) but you will only receive Seren funding for one of these, should you be successful.

For students who apply for both: places for Harvard will be announced before YYGS.  Therefore, if you are successful in being offered a place at Harvard and YYSG you will automatically be discounted for Seren funding for the YYGS programme. You may still attend YYGS if successful but will need to fund this yourself as this will be outside of the YYGS Seren partnership.

Seren applicants to both Yale Young Global Scholars and Harvard Summer School in 2019 will need the following forms:

  1. Sign Up Form for 2019 Seren International Summer Programme Workshops
  2. Question Submission Form for 2019 Seren International Summer Programmes
  3. Scholarship Application Form for 2019 Seren International Summer Programmes

 

Overview

The Seren Network has extended and expanded its unique partnership with the Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS) Program at Yale University, USA.

In 2018, 16 Seren students were admitted to Yale Young Global Scholars and received full funding to participate in academically rigorous two-week programmes on campus at Yale University in the USA.

For 2019, The Seren Network aims to support up to 30 Seren students to participate in the (YYGS Summer Program that will take place in New Haven (USA) and Beijing (China), providing a scholarship worth $6,250 per student co-funded by Welsh Government and YYGS.

YYGS is a summer academic enrichment and leadership program for outstanding high school students from around the world.

Each summer, students from over 100 countries participate in one of nine interdisciplinary sessions and immerse themselves in a global learning community.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. How do I find out more about the Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS) programme?

 To find out more about Yale Young Global Scholars, please click on the following link: https://globalscholars.yale.edu/   

  1. How do I apply to the YYGS summer 2019 programme?

All students should follow the application process on the YYGS website. Please click on the following link: https://apply.globalscholars.yale.edu/apply/

  1. What is the deadline for applying to the YYGS summer 2019 program?

The closing date for applications to YYGS summer 2019 is 04:59 GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) 7th February 2019. To apply, go to: https://apply.globalscholars.yale.edu/apply/

  1. What if I miss the deadline?

If you miss the application deadline, your application to YYGS will not be considered. All parts of the application must be complete for consideration for admission to YYGS.

  1. Who should apply to the YYGS summer 2019 program?

YYGS summer 2019 program is open to applications from anybody who meets the eligibility criteria described on the YYGS website. Please see the following link for details: https://globalscholars.yale.edu/applying/eligibility-requirements.

However, the Seren-YYGS Scholarship is only available to Seren Network students currently in Year 12 or the first year of A Levels at college if attending a further education college. The application process is highly competitive so only the strongest applicants will be offered admission.

The YYGS Program is designed to challenge top performing high school students with fast-paced, university-level material.

Prior to arriving at Yale, students are required to do several hundred pages of preparatory reading and during the program will spend the majority of each day in lectures, seminars, and small-group discussions.

Participants also complete a major writing and presentation assignment in which they are asked to collaborate with a team of students.

The academic work in the program is intense and each session covers a wide variety of material in two weeks.

Students must also be mature and able to engage respectfully and civilly in discussions over controversial intellectual, moral, and political issues.

A student in the program must have:

  • An excellent academic record
  • Demonstrated leadership potential
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • A desire and ability to work cooperatively with peers
  • A good work ethic
  • An ability to read, analyse, and reflect on large quantities of difficult material in English
  • High standards of personal and professional conduct
  1. How long is the YYGS summer 2019 program?

YYGS is two weeks long, with sessions commencing from mid-June through to the end of July.

  1. Would I be travelling to YYGS independently or would someone be with me?

YYGS summer 2019 has different start dates ranging from mid-June through to late-July.

Sessions are also delivered in different locations (New Haven, USA and Beijing, China).

As a result, there will not be a designated party of Seren Network students or representatives travelling together.

Students applying should be prepared to travel independently and this should be a consideration before applying.

Any Seren students admitted to the same session (in the same location and with the same start date) are welcome to travel together and we will endeavour to help facilitate this where possible. 

  1. Can I apply to the session in Beijing?

Yes, Beijing is definitely one of the options.

  1. What does the Seren-Yale Scholarship cover?

Tuition for each session of the 2019 Yale Young Global Scholars Program is $6,250 USD. The scholarship includes all programme costs

It also includes your accommodation in one of Yale’s historic residential colleges in New Haven or a hotel conveniently located near the Yale Center Beijing in China, three meals per day, and optional health insurance.

Travel is not included.

  1. How likely is it that my travelling costs will be covered?

The Seren-Yale Scholarship does not cover traveling expenses.

The Seren Network, will work with successful students to raise funds to support travel costs.

  1. As a Seren student, will I be guaranteed a position in the YYGS summer 2019 program?

No, Seren cannot guarantee the success of any individual application to YYGS. YYGS’s application process is highly competitive.

While the Seren-YYGS Partnership has identified up to 30 places that can be funded for Seren students in 2019, the standard of applications must still be high enough to be worthy of an offer of admission independently of the partnership, so only the strongest applications will be offered a space.

Applications will be considered by the YYGS admissions team and final decisions for admission to YYGS will be made by the YYGS admissions team.

  1. How will YYGS know that Im a Seren student and how do I notify them?

You must complete the Seren International Summer Programme Scholarship Application Form at the following link:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/fyoq5d

You must also inform your Seren hub coordinator of your application to YYGS. Your coordinator is required to provide a final list of applicants from their hubs. This final list will be submitted to YYGS as the final list of Seren-eligible applicants for the YYGS summer school.

You should also mention your membership of Seren within your application.

  1. When will I be notified whether my application to YYGS 2019 has been successful or not?

Applicants will be notified electronically of admissions decisions by late March/ early April 2019.

  1. Can students who are not members of The Seren Network apply?

YYGS is open to applications from across the world who meets the eligibility criteria described on the YYGS website.

Please see the following link for details:

https://globalscholars.yale.edu/applying/eligibility-requirements

However, the Seren-YYGS Scholarship is only available to Seren Network students who are successful in their applications to the YYGS summer 2019 program, and who have NOT previously attended a paid summer school in the US as part of a Welsh cohort.

Students who have benefitted from a scholarship, or supported financially by their unitary authority, or the welsh Government are not eligible for funding for 2019.

The application process is highly competitive and so only the strongest applicants will be made an offer of admission. 

  1. Do I need to complete the financial aid portion of the application? 

Yes, all applicants to the Seren-Yale Scholarship for YYGS summer 2019 must complete the financial aid portion of the application to be considered for this scholarship.

Students who do not apply for financial aid will not be eligible for the Seren-YYGS scholarship and should therefore also pay the application fee.

Please note that any admitted students who do not apply for financial aid will need to raise funds to cover their tuition independently of the Seren-Yale Young Global Scholars 2019 Partnership. 

  1. How do I pay the $60 application fee? Is this covered by the scholarship?

Ordinarily, all applicants must pay the $60 application fee.

YYGS will waive the application fee if it would constitute a significant financial burden for the student’s family.

If this is the case, the 2019 Application Fee Waiver Form in the following link must be submitted with the financial aid portion of your Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS) summer 2019 online application submission:

https://globalscholars.yale.edu/sites/default/files/files/2019_Fee%20Waiver%20Form.pdf

You must also indicate if you require an application fee waiver in the Seren International Summer Programme Scholarship Application Form at the following link:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/fyoq5d

  1. I have more questions relating to YYGS, where should I go?

Applicants should look out for information from their Seren hub coordinators and the Seren Network Facebook page about in-person and Facebook Live information sessions and workshops about 2019 Seren International Summer Programmes happening in January 2019.

Please see the following link to sign up to a workshop about the international summer programmes supported by Seren in 2019:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/feLnI5

If you’re a Seren student, please submit all questions relating to the Seren-YYGS 2019 Partnership via the following link:

https://equaleducation.typeform.com/to/cB3obD

Year 13 Seren Students and YYGS alumni from 2018 will be more than happy to help you and talk you through the process. Please contact your hub coordinator to be connected with the YYGS students from your hub.

You can also email Liam Rahman, at liam.rahman@aya.yale.edu or – Manon Charles, at manon.charles@equal.international

Applicants can also seek guidance from their school’s university guidance counsellors and Seren hub coordinators. We do, however, advise that guidance in this FAQ document and from the YYGS website is followed and prioritised above other advice you might receive.

Applying to study Medicine in Cardiff

Caitlin Golaup, Team Leader of the Student Engagement & Recruitment Team, tells us all about applying to study Medicine in the capital. 

Choosing a medical school, then getting a place, is not for the fainthearted.  As well as visiting Open Days, to see how you like the feel of the place, you also need to make a decision about what sort of medical school suits how you like to learn and the type of doctor you want to be.  As these are big decisions, good information matters.  Getting lots of detail all at once can be pretty overwhelming, though, and where do you start?

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For any degree, an Open Day visit is essential.  What are the people like?  The Students’ Union?  Sports facilities?  Residences?  Social life?  A glossy brochure or website is all very well but nothing beats seeing it in person.  Planning ahead makes your visit easier, with more chance of cheaper train fares or accommodation.  Cardiff University has its next Open Days on Wednesday 27th March and Friday 5th July 2019, so book your place on www.cardiff.ac.uk.

berenice cunningham walker june 2013 open day (1)

Successful application to medical school requires more knowledge and understanding than most other subjects.  To help you decide whether Medicine is for you, and understand your next step, Cardiff University runs Medicine Taster Days (Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd June 2019.) Choose from either of two identical days packed with Medicine-related activities and talks, with one programme for students and another designed for a parent or teacher.

  • Our full-day Student Programme explores key elements of becoming a doctor, with talks on our selection process, life as a doctor, funding your medical degree, Case Based Learning and a Q&A panel as well as workshops covering Clinical Skills, Simulation Suite, life as a medical student, Multiple Mini Interviews (MMIs) and writing your personal statement.
  • Our separate, full-day Accompanying Person’s programme, designed for a parent, guardian, careers advisor or teacher, covers many of these subjects but from an angle that looks at the support they, and we, can provide over the next few years.

We also give you lunch and plenty of opportunity to talk to our students about what medical school is really like.

This popular event is free but everyone attending needs a ticket.  Students can come solo or also book a ticket for one Accompanying Person, and vice versa. Booking opens 1st February 2019http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/medicine/courses/undergraduate/open-days

[NOTE TO TEACHERS: Please encourage your students to book early, as sometimes they do not appreciate the importance of reserving their place and places go quickly.]

2019 Summer Programmes – which one will you choose?

With the Christmas break fast approaching, The Seren Network is delighted to announce an early surprise for 2019.

Next summer, Seren students who are currently in year 12 will have the choice of three fully funded summer schools to attend at some of the most elite institutions in the world.three unis

These include:

  • The Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS) Program – at Yale University
  • The Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program – at Harvard University (NEW!)
  • The Seren Summer School – at Jesus College, Oxford University

These fantastic opportunities will be fully-funded* and as such, places are limited.

The Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS) Programme – at Yale University – read FAQs here.

What is it?

A two-week summer programme held at the Yale University Campus in New Haven, Connecticut with the option of also choosing a place at the Yale Centre in Beijing, China.

Students can choose between nine academic streams covering a range of topics such as; applied science & engineering, international affairs & globalization and biological & biomedical science.

Students then choose seminars and activities once they have been accepted into a stream.

Around 1,700 students attend the summer school from across the world.

When does it take place?

There are three cohorts over the summer. These are:

  • June 16-29
  • July 7-20
  • July 28-August 10

How many funded* spaces are available?

There are up to 30 funded* spaces available.

What is the application process?

Remember: Don’t start your application yet as we’ve not published the full details of the Welsh Government funding and funding provided from Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS).

The application consists of administration and registration steps, supplying examples of your work and grades, teacher recommendations, questions about your interests as well as a section on essays. These are: 1 x 500-word essay, 2 x 200-word essays.

Here’s a sample application for reference. https://globalscholars.yale.edu/sites/default/files/files/2019%20YYGS%20Application%20-%20SAMPLE.pdf 

You can find out more here: https://globalscholars.yale.edu/admissions

In January, we will also be hosting Facebook Live Q&A sessions with Yale Alumni Schools Committee member, Liam Rahman, who will help guide you through your application.

When is the deadline for applications?

The deadline is 7th February 2019 at 04:59 AM GMT (6th February 2019 at 23:59 EST)

Applicants will be notified electronically of admissions decisions by late March or early April.

What’s it like?

Earlier this year, 16 Seren students attended the YYGS programme.

You can watch a video about their experience here: 

You can also read several blogs about the students’ experiences:

 

The Harvard Summer School Pre-College Program – at Harvard University – read FAQs here

What is it?

This is a brand-new opportunity for Seren students to take part in.

Following the success of Seren’s Yale partnership established this year, we’re pleased to announce another US programme for Seren students in summer 2019.

It’s a two-week academic course which covers a semester’s worth of work in two weeks. All sessions are taught by Harvard affiliated staff and around 1,600 students from across the globe attend each year.

Students are expected to attend seminars and workshops around their chosen subject – there are more than 104 to choose from this year including creative writing, legal studies and anthropology & archaeology.

There are also compulsory ‘college life’ modules to attend which include trips outside of campus, including the chance to see the world famous Red Sox in their home stadium in Boston.

When does it take place?

Like Yale, this summer school takes place across three cohorts.

These are:

  • June 23–July 5
  • July 7–July 19
  • July 21–August 2

How many funded spaces are available?

There are up to 5 funded* spaces available.

What is the application process?

Remember: Don’t start your application yet as we’ve not published the full details of the Welsh Government funding.

The application process consists of administration and registration steps, supplying examples of your work and grades, questions about your interests, teacher recommendations and a section on short essays.

You can find out more here: https://www.summer.harvard.edu/high-school-programs/pre-college-program

In January, we will also be hosting Facebook Live Q&A sessions with Liam Rahman, who will help guide you through your application.

When is the deadline for applications?

The deadline is 1st February, 17:00 GMT – to be considered for funding support, you must apply by the Early application deadline

What’s it like?

As this is a totally new opportunity for Seren students, we don’t have any Seren testimonials but you can check out the Harvard website for more information.

This includes most commonly asked questions (please ignore all funding related questions here as Seren scholarship information will be provided separately in January)

You might also want to watch some YouTube video diaries of former Harvard students:

The Seren Summer School – at Jesus College, Oxford University

What is it?

The Seren Summer School is a unique collaboration between the University of Oxford and the Welsh Government’s Seren Network.

You’ll get the chance to live and work with Oxford academics and students for a week in the late summer.

The 2019 programme is around the theme of Earth’s Future and will feature a number of lectures, seminars and unique tutorial sessions to help coach students through an essay piece to be handed in during the summer school.

Topics will include; inter-planetary colonisation, climate, biodiversity and habitat change and world order in the age of Trump and Putin.

When does it take place?

It takes place 19th – 23rd August 2019

How many funded spaces are available?

There are up to 75 funded spaces available.

What is the application process?

Students will need to submit their personal information along with an admissions essay to be decided nearer the application opening time.

When is the deadline for applications?

Applications aren’t open yet, but we’ll be announcing their opening in May/June 2019.

What’s it like?

This summer school has been running for two years now and you can watch a video summarising it here: 

You can also read a selection of blogs about it here:

 

We’ll be back in early 2019 with more details, Live Q&A sessions and FAQ blogs to answer all your questions about these three amazing opportunities.

 

In the meantime, we wish you a Merry Christmas / Nadolig Llawen from the Seren team!

 

*Payment for the courses will be covered by The Seren Network via the Welsh Government. Flights and transfers will be funded through private sponsorship which has not yet been fully confirmed, as was the case for Seren students who took part in the Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS) programme in 2018.

 

 

Spotlight on: Cardiff University

This week, we spoke to Katie Waits from Pontypridd about how her first few months at Cardiff University have been.

 

How did you find the transition from high school to university?

Katie’s time at Cardiff started a bit wobbly, like many students she had first-time nerves and missed home.

“Generally, I’ve had an enjoyable time but initially it was difficult to make friends and I’ve had to learn to be a lot more independent.

“I quickly overcame these issues and threw myself into the aspects of university life I enjoy. For example, I’ve joined the Harry Potter society and used this to make friends with similar interests to me. Living just half and hour from home has helped me manage the transition as well and really enhanced my experience”

 

Why Cardiff?

“As a Russell Group university, Cardiff is an ideal choice for those wanting to aim high. I went to the Open Day and the English department was displayed amazingly, the course seemed really interesting with lots of choice in terms of modules – you can almost design your own course.

“As well as the great reputation, I was drawn to Cardiff for personal reasons. It’s just half an hour from home which is perfect for me, as I know I can suffer quite badly with homesickness. Having lived nearby for all my life, I was already quite familiar with the city which helped my transition.

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What are your highlights?

“The lectures, definitely! I love to learn new things, and couldn’t wait to get back to it, especially having been away from education since June. So far, they have all been informative and incredibly interesting.

“Doing a joint-honours has meant that I get to study two subjects, which prevents either one getting boring. I’ve never studied journalism or media before and it’s fascinating learning the history and theory behind it. English has also introduced me to new ways of thinking, which is exciting!

 

How about outside of studying?

“Being close to home, I get to see my family a lot and I’m also still in touch with friends from school but I’m also enjoying having the independence to experience a new city.

“I spend a fair amount of time walking the streets of Cardiff (everything is in walking distance) getting familiar with living in a city rather than a town. I especially love the parks in Cardiff – they’re beautiful in Autumn because of the colours.

“It’s also been great to meet people in person that I got to know over Facebook during the Summer. There were a few Facebook groups set up for people that would be studying the same course, and I’ve made friends with some lovely people who I can sit with in lectures and chat with in a coffee shop.

“Cardiff is also the home of many popular TV programmes – for example Doctor Who and Sherlock. Also, the new Journalism building is right next door to the new BBC building, a perfect location for someone with an interest in the media, like me!

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How was the applications process?

“It was straight-forward. The English course didn’t require any interviews or tests, the only tricky bit was the personal statement but thanks to help from the Seren Network, I managed to perfect it. The RCT hub co-ordinator encouraged us to send our personal statements to be reviewed by him before sending them off, which was a huge help. It was also helpful to meet speakers and instructors that had previously studied at Cardiff, giving us an insight into what tutors at Cardiff would be looking for.

 

Any tips?

“Yes! Number one; make sure you have a strong personal statement that reflects your passion for the subject, this is what will set you apart from the rest of the applicants. Secondly; there can be a lot of pressure to apply to certain universities, but you need to apply to the one you think you’ll enjoy the most. I felt like I’d enjoy my time at Cardiff, did my research and weighed up the pros and cons.”