STUDENTS from Priestley College, Warrington, are still aiming high despite uncertainty surrounding university and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
By the deadline for early applications, 25 students at Priestley College had applied for places at Oxford, Cambridge and degrees in Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary Science.
Tutor Ian Hughes, who supports Priestley’s university hopefuls, said the figures were encouraging and reassuring.
“With so much uncertainty at the moment it is great to see so many young people with big plans for their futures,” he said.
“We have students applying for universities all over the country and they are vying for some of the most competitive places, which shows their focus and determination to succeed.”
As well as applications for Oxbridge, students’ other first choice next destinations include Edinburgh, Bristol, Imperial College, London, as well as other Russell Group universities.
They are looking to study degrees as varied as French & Arabic, Law, Experimental Psychology, History and Natural Sciences.
Applications for these universities and courses have to be submitted early because the competition for places is so fierce.
Daniella Glenn, who hopes to study Law at Cambridge, said submitting applications during uncertain times had been difficult.
“To even consider aiming high and applying for university when we barely know what tomorrow holds has been tough, but it is important to still focus on working towards our goals” said the former Culcheth High pupil.
“I have had a lot of support from everyone at college in person, email or video chat. Although it has been harder, we have found ways to overcome the difficulties and still meet the deadlines.”
Priestley has a team dedicated to helping raise aspirations of young people so they know the country’s finest universities are within their reach.
It works in partnership with OxNet – an outreach programme run by the University of Oxford – to ensure Year 12s can make competitive applications.
“We still have students coming to Priestley who believe the doors to certain universities are closed to them, but that is simply not the case,” said Ian Hughes.
“Our message is loud and clear: If you have the talent and the aptitude, then nothing is beyond your reach.”