Centre aiming to get underpriveleged kids into uni opens
- Credit: UEA/INTOuniversity
A new education centre for kids from disadvantaged backgrounds has opened in the city.
Primary and secondary school students, as well as parents and teachers, were invited to the opening of the West Earlham Community Centre this week.
The centre signals the start of a new partnership between the University of East Anglia (UEA) and IntoUniversity, the UK’s largest university-access charity.
Around 30 students between the ages of seven and 18 were in attendance at the event in Wilberforce Road, some delivering their own speeches.
Many of those who spoke are set to benefit from the centre for the next academic year and beyond.
UEA vice chancellor, Professor David Richardson, said: “It was a real pleasure to meet and speak to some bright and inspirational young people.
“Some of them are right at the start of their educational journey but already have great plans for their future careers and are excited about the prospect of studying at university.”
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He added: “Our partnership with IntoUniversity gives them a much better opportunity to realise these ambitions, and of course this was just a small number of the hundreds of Norwich school students that this centre will support."
At the event students from the likes of West Earlham Junior School, Valley Primary and City Academy Norwich were able to experience some of the learning resources that will be available at the centre.
Over half the funding for the centre, which employs five full-time members of staff, is being provided by UEA.
These funds will go to supporting IntoUniversity's work, which saw 71pc of its school leavers going on to university in 2020, versus 26pc of students from similar backgrounds nationally.
Hugh Rayment-Pickard, chief strategy officer and co founder of IntoUniversity, said: “We're delighted to have officially launched IntoUniversity Norwich in partnership with the University of East Anglia.
“It is wonderful to be able to celebrate the success of our students so far, as well as looking forward to what they will achieve in the future.”
If you are a young person who has a story to tell or would be interested in having your voice heard in the paper, please contact Sophie Skyring via firstname.lastname@example.org