Magnus Church of England Academy Year 13 student, Noah Potter (age 17 years), is currently preparing himself for the next stage of his education after being awarded a fully-funded degree at Colgate University in New York State.
Noah says the opportunity to apply came through Magnus C of E Academy’s ongoing work with The Sutton Trust, an organisation founded in 1997 to improve social mobility in Britain through educational opportunities for young people.
Noah said, “It all started during a Teams chat when someone mentioned an opportunity to study in America. It was through The Sutton Trust US Programme, and my friend and I decided to sign up. We were both accepted to get on to the programme where we were able to learn all about what it’s like to study in America and the potential benefits.”
This initial step was followed by a series of stages with Magnus in partnership with The Sutton Trust, helping students to explore university options, subjects outside of the school curriculum, and to develop skills to help students in their ongoing education and workplace.
Noah said the final stage was to submit an application to attend an American University and his choice was Colgate University in New York State, “I wrote a 600 word essay on a subject of my choice and I wrote about confidence. I did a lot of drafts of that and submitted it at the end of September. At this point I waited and looked at other options in case my first-choice university, Colgate, didn’t work out.”
Noah said he chose Colgate University as he wanted to go to a liberal arts college, where, unlike the English system, he would not be locked into a subject for three years. “My interests have often changed over time, and in the American system you can choose your subject in the second year.
“I found I had a place at midnight on the 13th December, and I was a mix of emotions, fear and excitement. I was sat on my bed waiting for it, when I opened it I ran in to my mum and woke her up! It started to seem more real when I had to go through fine details, the financials for instance.”
Now Noah is planning his relocation to the United States shortly after he gets his exam results in August. “I choose my courses when I arrive, I want to major in maths so will take courses related to that, so can also take some science too. I am very interested in taking a course on Native American History.
“To be honest I feel a bit terrified! I do wonder why I didn’t take an easier, or closer option! I know that no one else is going to American from my year group. The first day of term is the 21st August, so as results days here are around the 18th, I’ll be getting my results and then going to America.”
Noah will be staying in university dormitories and says he will miss Magnus C of E Academy. “Magnus has helped me throughout, Mrs Tucker, Mrs Milan and Miss Clarke have been especially helpful to me. Mrs Milan has counselled me throughout and my references came from Mrs Tucker and Mrs Clarke. I am really grateful to Magnus, I don’t think I would have been given this opportunity without their work to give us more options. I am going to make the most of it, take every opportunity I can. Hopefully one day I will come back and speak to students about my experience. I will miss Magnus and the friends I have here.”
Mrs Sarah Tucker (Senior Leader - Head of Post 16), said Noah thoroughly deserves this life changing opportunity. “Noah is an extremely witty and intelligent student. He is very dedicated to his studies, and often goes above and beyond what his teachers ask of him. He is a popular student and has great relationships with his teachers and peers.
“I believe Noah will thrive at university in America. It is a huge step for him to leave the comfort of Newark, but something he has been focussed on for 18 months now and has worked so hard to achieve.
“The Sutton Trust have held his hand every step of the way. Their knowledge of the complex US college system has been crucial to his acceptance. They helped him prep for the entry tests, assisted him with his interviews, and proof read all of his written submissions and statements. This was alongside his lengthy recommendations written by his form tutor, Mrs Milan. The whole Academy wish him well on this exciting venture.”