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3 September 2020: Uni Connect (NCOP) - Linking London Update

Uni Connect (NCOP) Targeted Update

August saw the end of the first year of phase 2 of our Uni Connect programme – despite a strange second half we were successful in reaching more students and ensuring they had access to outreach provision during a turbulent time in their educational careers. In terms of final figures for the end of this academic year, we have engaged with a total of 711 learners, 339 of whom are part of our target cohort. We have engaged students in 1016 activities across the year.

Key highlights from over the summer include the provision of the “Get creative at home” project. This collaborative project, set up by RCSSD, Goldsmiths University and Ravensbourne University went ahead in place of the summer school which was unfortunately cancelled due to Covid-19. Instead, the team worked to supply 50 young people from across London with boxes of art supplies to help them Get Creative at Home. The boxes contained paints, brushes, charcoal, clay, a sketch pad, pastels and a disposable camera. Running for 3 weeks in July, weekly task-based videos were created with professional artists who suggested themes for the participants to consider when creating their own works of art. These videos were then sent to the young people at the start of each week and, alongside a series of zoom workshops and weekly support sessions with artists to help them develop technique and skill, they were encouraged to create their own pieces for display in a digital gallery. All of this work can be viewed by visiting the Get Creative at Home website.

Colleges are opening up over the coming weeks with new measures in place to ensure student and staff safety – the Linking London Uni Connect programme will be continuing its work under new precautions including facilitating face to face interventions. In hub 1 our Support Officer will be working across both Havering campuses of New City College – we are excited to Welcome Claire on board and looking forward to the opportunity to support a larger number of students through one to one sessions next academic year. In hub 2 over August our engagement officer at LSEC has been working to increase the presence of Uni Connect within the college, starting by creating a new sharing platform online to collate all information on upcoming sessions for learners. In Hub 3 at Richmond-upon-Thames college we are due to continune our subject specific support in Business and Sports working closely with St Mary’s University.

Central team have facilitated a focus group with students from Havering Sixth Form College to gain insight into the experiences of our target learners across the academic year – particularly in light of school and college closures. Further information from this session will be available in the coming weeks. We have also recruited a new programme officer who will be starting with us in early September.

If you would like to hear more about our Uni Connect good news stories, please subscribe to our bulletin here: 

Outreach Hub Update

We have finalised a range of resources in the last few months. We have produced and will continue to update a calendar detailing open events at London HEIs, which you can find here. We have pulled together a list of London HEIs who offer a personal statement review and feedback service, which you can find here. Our first subject adviser guide which focuses on the Humanities and aims to support college staff in advising Level 3 students of the HE options available to them can be found here. We have a student focused Engineering mini guide available here and a total of 11 posters linking careers to curriculum available here. Do let us know if you would like physical copies of any of these resources sent to you. We are producing an Access to HE Diploma Package which will consist of pre-recorded videos produced by our HE partners and a live Q&A session with student ambassadors – you can register for that here and the package will be released in the week of October 19th. Our bulletin continues to highlight online outreach activities, you can see past issues here and subscribe here. As always, if you have any questions or requests for support, do get in touch with Jess or Melanie.  


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