Recently we invited Year 11 students to submit their questions to our Head Students Phoebe and Noah. Here they share their answers.
If you have a question, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll include it in our next Q&A.
Q: What are the teachers like and is it true there's a big difference between GCSE and subjects in 6th Form?
Phoebe: I would say teachers are incredibly supportive, dedicated and encouraging. They want all their students to reach their full potential and achieve the grades that they deserve. They treat students like adults and help prepare them for life beyond College.
Yes it is true that there’s a big difference between GCSE and subjects in 6th form. Teaching involves more independent learning and it may seem more difficult at first. However, you will be doing subjects that you enjoy which helps with this. You will also have fewer lessons a week than you would at GCSE and more free periods throughout the day which you can use for independent study.
My advice for getting ready for College life would be to understand that the first couple of weeks will seem different. I think it's important to keep an open mind, it does all soon become familiar. I would also say make good use of the opportunities that are offered to you - your College experience will be one to remember.
Q: I have applied to a couple of Colleges but I'm still undecided. What made you choose HNC?
Noah: My experience with applying to Colleges may be a little different to you. For a little bit of background, I moved to Huddersfield 6 weeks before starting in September of the year that I started.
HNC was the first college to offer me a place, but was also my first choice. I immediately felt comfortable and the supportive atmosphere is incredible. Teachers treat you in an adult-like manner, the facilities are incredible and all these things made me choose HNC. I was part of a little video which was made to help students see these facilities in lockdown and hear more about why students choose HNC – have a watch here!
Q: What are you going to do after College and how did you decide? Is it OK that I still have no idea?
Phoebe: I am hoping to go to Bath University to study Psychology, something that became a firm choice after a few months of studying Psychology. It was also the idea that I could be making a difference to people’s lives through this subject that appealed to me.
But when I first came to College, I had no idea and neither did many of my friends. I remember Physiotherapy being one of my options! I would say that College has plenty of help to make sure you make the right choice, no matter if you know or don’t know what you want to do. Tutorial will help you learn about all your options, and our Careers team are brilliant too.
Q: I have had quite a tough time with some personal problems. What is the mental health support like?
Noah: When you join HNC your timetable will include your lessons along with tutorial. You will have a friendly tutor who will be your go-to for advice and support – whatever you need, they are there to help.
When I joined HNC, I had only just moved to the area. I knew no one (which was quite tough) but my tutor was extremely helpful and helped me to settle quickly. We also have a Student Welfare Team and Mental Health Champions (both staff and students) who will support you with anything you need. There’s always lots happening in College around mental health, whether you require support at that time or not – we’ve had loads of ideas and activities to help us stay positive during lockdown for example.
Q What was the hardest part of your College interview? I'm quite worried about what to expect!
Phoebe: The hardest part of my College interview was dealing with the nerves I felt beforehand. I knew that Huddersfield New College was very likely my first choice, and I was worried about getting accepted! However, my interviewer made me feel very comfortable and the nerves disappeared once it started. My advice would be to just be yourself and let the interviewer see the person that you are. Don’t be afraid to talk about yourself in a positive manner and although it’s hard, try not to let yourself worry too much!
Q I have been reading about enrichment. What have you taken part in and why?
Noah: During the first lockdown, applications for the new student leadership team opened, which I obviously applied for! I was successful in my application and am now Head Student (Pastoral). But this is just one of the many things available to you and there is honestly something for everyone and it’s your choice how much you want to benefit from.
One of the reasons I applied for this position was because I am keen to share student voice, both for Senior Leadership and for you, the next year group at HNC. But if this doesn’t appeal, I can promise you there is something you will love to get involved in – my friends do everything from things like writing for the College magazine, playing sport to taking part in College productions.