carla lee, joined RIC from yarm school, stockton on tees
“I’m originally from South Korea. My family moved to Durham when I was 5 years old and I have studied in the UK ever since. My sister Seewon (Anna) came here to do a one year course last year and I came to visit. I had a chance to talk to some of the teachers and they really sounded as if they knew what they were doing! My previous school was one of the best in the area and I was very happy there but I thought perhaps a change for 6th form would be a good idea. At first it was very weird, particularly the informality of the school and the fact that there was no uniform. Boarding life was very different too but gradually I became more settled and happier. I would like to study Law at university but I love art too. I’m taking A levels in Chemistry, Government and Politics and English lit and this school gave me the chance to study A2 textiles in one year so that I can focus on the others next year.”
tom teverson joined RIC from more house school, surrey
I came to RIC this year for year 13 to study A levels in Biology, Chemistry, English and AS Maths. Previously I’d been a student at Moore House, a boarding school in Surrey and at a comprehensive school in Hayes. I’m dyslexic and there was no real help for me at Hayes. It was like a giant machine churning out students – there were about 3000 pupils in total. There was no room for individuality – I hated it. I really loved the ethos of my previous school though – it was an inspiring and I had amazing friends but my head was completely in the clouds. I would spend my time reading Shakespeare, rowing and fencing obsessively. Although I thought I was working hard it wasn’t enough and the study I did do was not exam focussed. Consequently my A level results were BDEE. It turned out that actually I needed go back to basics at AS to improve my understanding overall and with such big syllabuses there was a lot to cover in a year.I’m here to get the grades. The teaching is superb and I now feel incredibly well prepared for the examinations. I hope to study English next year.
jack weston joined RIC from gravesend grammar school for boys
I decided to change school after year 12. I was at Gravesend Grammar School for Boys and was disappointed with my AS results. My results were not what I wanted or needed for university. I’d been at my previous school for 6 years and consequently there were lots of distractions. I came to RIC to take Biology, Chemistry, Geography and Government and Politics, it’s a much more academically focussed college. In fact it was my parents who came in to see Alistair and have a look around as I was working, it wasn’t until my first day that I saw the college for myself! It has been a really good year, I’ve worked really hard and the support from the teachers has been excellent. My personal tutor gave me lots of help and advice with my university application and I now have 5 out of 5 offers for university. Warwick is my first choice and I know that I’ve done all I could have this year to get the grades.
I was so happy with my GCSE results but then my AS year did not go as well as planned at my previous school. I got BDD in Maths, Chemistry and Physics. I was lucky, my parents gave me the opportunity to come here for year 13 and retake some of my AS modules. Environment change has been the key. I think I was just too buddy with my friends at Bennett which affected my work. At RIC I am here to work hard and get the grades I need for Engineering. The travelling is strenuous but it is great having the college minibus service from Sevenoaks. I feel so much more confident now and am much better prepared for the exams. We do loads of past papers and the teachers give us fantastic insights into how to answer questions to achieve our potential. There is a real enjoyment of learning, the teachers are passionate about their subjects and we don’t just work from text books. Maths lessons are quirky in the shed in the garden! I’m hoping to study Chemical Engineering next year.
maneesh dhillon joined ric from st george’s school, gravesend, pictured with pav randwawa
Last year I didn’t have much guidance as to what subjects to choose for A level, I studied Chemistry, Biology and RE. When I got my results I decided to change subjects and haven’t looked back. I’m now doing Biology, Chemistry, Statistics and Sociology and I’m aiming for Medicine. I had already planned to come to RIC for year 13 as there was just not enough help at my old school. I effectively had to teach myself, the classes were too disrupted by people who didn’t really want to be there.
At RIC everyone has common goals, we know what we want. It is much better for learning, a more relaxed atmosphere. We are on first name terms with the teachers making them more on a level, which means there is more respect. Programmes of work/modules are put together carefully to suit each individual.
It all just seems to flow when you are here. I sit with my friends in class and work hard. Teachers give you the incentive, they help you to study effectively and use your time wisely. I think this has really prepared me for independent study at University.
I still find time for Gatka, performance swordfighting – see us in Gravesend town centre on Saturdays from time to time!