Belated Happy New Year

With probably the busiest and most intense term of the year behind us, we are excited to see Year 13 reaping the rewards of all their hard work and efforts, and to be switching our focus to working more closely with Year 12 as they approach a critically important stage in the whole university search process.

In this email: 

Year 13 – Congratulations

University Offers

With the majority of university applications submitted at the end of last year, students have already started to receive some excellent university offers.

In the UK students have received offers from the universities of…

University of Bath, University of Birmingham, University of Bristol, Cardiff University, University of Dundee, Durham University, University of East Anglia, The University of Edinburgh, University of Exeter, University of Glasgow, Goldsmiths, University of London, King’s College London, Loughborough University, Newcastle University, University of Nottingham, University of Leeds, University of Oxford, University of Surrey, University for the Creative Arts, Royal Veterinary College

In the US – Creighton University, Arizona State University, SCAD, Knox College, Lawrence University, The College of Wooster, Stetson University, AMDA, Butler University, NYU Stern School of Business, Michigan State University, Purdue University, The University of Kansas

In Canada – University of Waterloo

In Hong Kong – The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

In Europe – Eindhoven University of Technology, University of Amsterdam


Students are currently having interviews and are well prepared having attended various workshops organized by the HEO.
Further Workshops
There will be further sessions in the coming months explaining how to respond to university offers and how to organize housing and accommodation. As further interviews are arranged, each student will have a mock interview with their counsellor ensuring they are feeling confident and well prepared.

Year 12

It’s time to brag!

After a term of settling into senior secondary, Year 12 are gearing up for one of the busiest and most important periods in the whole university research process. They are currently working on their student brag sheet, which is one of the most fundamental elements of their profile for university applications.  Not only do they help us write strong references, but they also encourage students to start doing some serious self-reflection and to think about the various options that are available.

The deadline for returning this brag sheet is Wednesday 13 February 2019. We encourage you to take time to discuss this brag sheet with your child as it can be a challenging task. For a copy of the brag sheet, please click HERE.

Parents can brag too

The HEO sees the university guidance and admissions process as very much a partnership, between the students, the parents and the school. In this respect, we actively seek input from families by ways of Parent Brag Sheet.

Please consider this as your opportunity to tell us everything about your son or daughter! We use the information you give us to more effectively counsel your child, to get a stronger feel for family priorities concerns and aspirations; and to advocate for them through our university references and Letters of Recommendation.

Some of the information you provide will help us in an "off the record" capacity, where as other information will help us brag about your child. The Letter of Recommendation is a crucial element of the university application and our goal is to write a strong and compelling reference for each and every student and therefore your input is of great importance and relevance.

Please click HERE for a copy of the brag sheet and email back to by the end of February 2019.

ESF University Fair – Monday 18 February 2019

Having attended our own university fair back in September, Year 12 will be well prepared for the ESF Fair at KGV on Monday 18 February 2019. This trip is compulsory for all Year 12 students and is a valuable opportunity for students to meet with university reps from a wide range of universities from around the world.

An eNotice has been sent out to parents and we would be grateful if you could please sign and submit this as soon as possible. Students will leave school at 12.35pm.

For a copy of the fair brochure and a list of the universities attending, please click HERE.

Summer Programmes – Important for Everyone

Now is the time to think about making your summer productive and one of the key ways of achieving this is to enroll on a summer programme or take up an internship.  There are many good options available, however the ones below have received some positive feedback from our students:

Rustic Pathways -
The Oxford Spires -
Oxbridge Academic Programmes -
Discovery Summer Programmes-
Cornell Summer Programmes -
Gordonstoun International Summer School -
Wharton Summer Programmes -
Waterloo Summer Programme -
Reach Cambridge -
Cambridge Programmes at Canadian International School -

Medical Internships

Banking Internships

Summers are a time for enriching experiences and summer programs are just one way to do that but remember there are other activities that can offer a rich experience such as volunteer work, internships, creative endeavors, etc and the HEO will talk about this in upcoming sessions.

British Council Fair - Study UK Fair 2019

IDP Australian Education Fair - February

Calendar of Events

As a new year dawns, so does another busy schedule of university visits. Right from the first week back after Christmas, we have had a steady flow of universities visiting DC. As always, parents are warmly welcome to attend these events.

Please visit HEO event’s calendar for details HERE.

Year 12

Writing Workshop

Admissions essays are a crucial part of the university application process and to prepare our students we are organizing a writing workshop on Wednesday 22 May 2019 from 10am-12.30pm. Admissions officers from UK and US universities will be giving their expert advice on how to write a strong admissions essay. This is a mandatory session for all Year 12 and more details to follow soon - so watch this space.

Year 11

Subject Selection is Important

The subjects that students choose for the IB Diploma can play a crucial role in university admissions. They can determine an offer or a rejection and the subjects studied at Higher Level can be particularly important. However, course requirements can vary between country, programme and university. Some courses do not require particular combinations, but some do so it’s important you do your research early.

In addition to a session on IB Subject Selections the HEO along with the Deans and Learning Advisors will be holding sessions on career and personality assessments and pathways, resume/CV/Cover letter writing, and an introduction to the school’s university management tool, BridgeU.

Please look at the following link for some important information about IB subject selection: 
Click Here

Getting Ready for Work Experience

In preparation for their work experience in June, the HEO are running several sessions with Year 11 to help them start thinking of possible careers and fields of interest. During our first session, students completed the Myers-Briggs 16 personality test. Please take the time to talk to your children about their results, it was very enlightening for many of them.

There are some great personality and career tests available which can be very helpful in identifying your interests, strengths and weaknesses.  Here are a few that we can recommend: 
Click Here

HEO Coffee Corner 
Drop in for a cup of coffee and talk to us!

The HEO will be holding regular coffee mornings in the Senior Student Centre to keep parents informed on what is happening in the complex arena of Higher Education and to address any issues, questions or concerns. This is aimed to parents of students in Years 10-13 and the topic of discussion will be fluid and flexible, directed purely by your requests.

Our next coffee morning will be held on Friday 1 March 2019 at 8.30am targeted towards parents of Year 13 parents, but everyone is welcome. The topic will be focused on how to respond to university offers, payment of deposits, and the transition to university. To register for this event and to tell us what you would like to discuss, please click HERE.  

Upcoming Parent Coffee Corners

Tuesday 19 March 2019 - An overview of HE in Year 12 and the UK admissions process

Thursday 28 March 2019 - HK & Europe admissions 

Tuesday 9 April 2019 - Canada & US admissions

Thursday 16 May 2019 - Australia, NZ, Japan, Korea, Singapore and other countries 

Thursday 13 June 2019 - Transitioning from Year 12 to Year 13 - what to expect

On a Final Note...

Mrs Jackson will be on maternity leave from Monday 18 February to Monday 27 May. In her absence Ms Shirley Cheng will be stepping in as Higher Education Counsellor. Ms Cheng has extensive experience in Higher Education Counselling at both ESF Island School and German Swiss International School so students will be in very capable hands. We excitedly await the birth of Mrs Jackson’s baby and look forward to her return at the end of May.  

As always, our door is open to both students and parents and we look forward to seeing you at some point soon.

Wishing you all a very Happy, prosperous and healthy Chinese New Year of the Pig.

Kind regards,

Ms Susie Blomfield & Mrs Marisa Jackson

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