Visiting a school near you is a really easy way to tell prospective students what Oxbridge is all about. It’s also a very effective way of telling people about Oxbridge because prospective students tend to trust a current student much more than an admissions tutor or website. Current students have no hidden agenda! If you can spare half an hour of your outrageously long holiday at Christmas, Easter or Summer just follow these 5 easy steps:
1. Choose a local school(s)
It doesn’t have to be your old one, any one will do. If you’re at a loss, email me your postcode and I will find one for you!
2. Contact them, offering to do a talk.
If you would like an email template, just email me or you can write your own. The best people to get in touch with are Heads of Sixth Form or, if it’s a Sixth Form College someone in charge of careers/higher education. Avoid emailing headteachers as they’re often too busy to read/reply to your email. If you can, stress that a talk to a small group would be better. This is easier for you than a whole school assembly and encourages more people to ask questions. Again, if you’re too shy or lazy to do it yourself, email me and I’ll do it for you!
3. Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please let me know which school/college you’ve emailed, this way I can keep track of who we’re visiting and avoid people all bombarding the same school. I can also follow up if you don’t get a reply. Please also let me know when you get a reply from the college and when you’re doing the visit.
4. Visit the school(s).
Do a short talk/or presentation at the school(s) in question. Again, if you’re at a loss for what to talk about I have a really useful presentation I can email you- just ask! Overall though, as long as you’re truthful about your time at Queens’ and you stress that you’re merely offering your own personal experience that’s fine, and it will undoubtedly be useful for the students you’re speaking to. Also talk to your contact about future visits (not necessarily from you, don’t worry) and if that’s something the school would be interested in.
5. Email me: email@example.com
Let me know how the visit went and whether you have any feedback. Also don’t hesitate to let me know if you were asked any difficult questions you couldn’t answer. I might be able to help, and if I can’t I will know who can. Finally, please let me know your contact at the school and whether they would be interested in future visits. It is becoming increasingly apparent how important a lasting relationship with a school is for the success of our Access work.