Rebecca is a bright and motivated Swiss student who studied the Swiss maturite, a baccalaureate style programme. After considerable discussion over her choices, she applied to UK universities to study liberal arts and sciences, population studies or global health and received offers from all five choices: UCL (x 2), King's, Queen Mary and Kent.
Rebecca applied through Liz Reece Careers as her UCAS centre because her school did not assist with UCAS applications. Liz guided Rebecca through the process of choosing courses at suitable universities, writing a strong personal statement and completing the UCAS form. Not having a school system for writing suitable references, Rebecca asked some teachers to provide a subject reference and Liz used these to synthesise the content and ensure a strong overall reference based on school information and her own observations: when at UCL's interview, the professor apparently complimented her on the reference as well as the strength of her personal statement!
The comments are un-edited responses to a follow up questionnaire that Rebecca completed and returned to me:
1. If you can remember that far back, was the explanation of how we would work together clear? Yes/No If no, how could this be improved? Yes, I clearly understood that the aim was for our work together to be collaboration and not a one-person job
2. How helpful did you find the discussions and activities in support of your course choice? I found that, in regards of how lost I was before we started working together, your advise were really well directed and I very quickly started to understand the mechanism of UCAS and started researching for the right courses instead of being completely lost and not knowing where or what to look for
3. How helpful did you find the examples of statements, the guidance and the on-going assistance with the personal statement? I used the examples of statement, and found them very helpful, especially the ones of what not to do! The on-going assistance was what I truly loved the most as you always seemed to understand what I wanted to express and found a more fitted way to say it, also, the part that I was the most stressed about was the number of worlds but thanks to you it was barely a problem for me. Also, I really liked our discussion on skype concerning the personal statement; I found that they were extremely efficient, straight to the point and sincere
4. Was the process easier or harder than you had imagined it would be? I found the process easier
5. Why? Because I was expecting the redaction of my personal statement to be much harder and more complex than it actually was, the only part that was as hard as I imagined it would be was the interview part but it turned out fine so I keep a good memory of it even though, at the time, it was really a stressful stage
6. What was most difficult about the UCAS application – e.g. the course choices, the application form, the statement, sorting out the predicted grades and reference with school?The most complicated part was with out of doubt sorting out the predicted grades!
7. What would you like to say to future applicants to help them? Weather you are sure that studying in the Uk is what you want to do for sure or no, the process of applying through UCAS is something, once you’ve done it, that will prove helpful later in your life and that will provide you with a great amount of new skills (eg: how to present yourself, learn to collaborate, learn to take mature decisions, develop your personality, have a regular pass of work…)
8. Do you have any other comments about the process or support? Just to say that I thank you for the quality of your guidance and for the support you provided me with during our work together
9. Do your parents have any comments about the support that you received (you might need to ask them!) “The support and advises given to Rebecca were excellent. The follow up has been regular, Mme Reecce’s presence was reliable and her interventions were relevant. At the same time, the follow up has never been intrusive, and the work is never done for student but rather in full collaboration with her. The student can develop her own personality. Mme Reece should be thanked for that.” Sandrine Weil (my mother)
10. Would you mind if I include some of your details and comments on my website for future students to read? Yes/no No