Press Office


Students get the low down from those in the know


Newcastle University graduates will be helping to guide potential students through Clearing.

The 10-strong team of graduate ambassadors will be manning the phones on Thursday when A-level results are revealed.

Matt Stephenson, 22, from the West End of Newcastle, is one of the team. He said: “It’s an important job because we’ll be helping to point the students who call in the right direction and because we all studied at Newcastle, we’ll be able to answer any general questions they might have about the University and the city.”

Sarah Addison, 22, from Ashby-de-la-Zouch, in Leicestershire, graduated with a 2:1 in history and psychology. She said: “I know exactly how they feel. I originally applied to another university to study history and didn’t get the grades I needed. But I’m proof there are options available to you and I’ll be able to tell them that. I took a year out, worked at an orphanage for children with special needs in Ghana and realised I wanted to do work like that in the future. I decided to go back to University and came to Newcastle to study as it was one of the only places that did the course I wanted to do.”

Clearing will be their first job as new graduate ambassadors but the team will be spending the rest of the year visiting schools and colleges around the country telling students all about life at Newcastle University.

The team will work with sixth-formers, running workshops and giving presentations on topics such as applying to university, student life and finances, to attract teenagers from all backgrounds into higher education.

The ambassadors will also highlight Newcastle’s successful track record in graduate employment. This year, 93% of graduates secured employment within six months and Newcastle is in the top 20 of universities targeted by employers.

Sam Thornton, 23, from Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, recently completed a post-graduate certificate in education at Newcastle. He said: “The graduate ambassadors came to my school and spoke to us and it really made an impression on me. I wanted to study geography and I knew Newcastle was a good place to do it.  I took part in one of the University’s PARTNERS summer schools, got the grades I needed and I’ve never looked back. I am really looking forward to being able to tell people about why university is such a good idea.”

Lucy Backhurst, Head of Undergraduate Recruitment and Admissions at Newcastle University said: “The graduate ambassadors will play a really important role for us, not just during clearing but throughout the year.

“Our recent graduates are the best people we have who can talk to about what life is really like at university.

“They have a real impact too. The Graduate Ambassador scheme, which has been running since 2005, has encouraged many students, from all backgrounds, to come and study with us here at Newcastle University.

Click here to find out more about clearing or call the Clearing Hotline: 08457 88 77 22.

published on: 13 August 2012