“It is great to see young people with willingness to work hard and dedicate their own time to participate in a wide range of activities across the city and I hope their example will inspire many others to take part also."
Paul Richards, Deputy Vice Chancellor of Staffordshire University
Pupils from across Stoke-on-Trent donned caps and gowns to celebrate their success at a special graduation ceremony at Staffordshire University.
The young achievers, aged between seven and 14 years old, graduated from the Children’s University programme which rewards out-of-school achievements in a broad range of activities
At the graduation ceremony Paul Richards, Deputy Vice Chancellor of Staffordshire University, presented the pupils with their awards.
Paul said: “It is great to see young people with willingness to work hard and dedicate their own time to participate in a wide range of activities across the city and I hope their example will inspire many others to take part also.
“I hope their commitment will be rewarded, not only by Staffordshire University and the Children’s University, but also in their future endeavours.”
Each graduate participated in at least 30 hours of accredited activities which range from workshops at the city’s libraries, museums and theatres to after-school sports activities and the Stoke-on-Trent Councils Street Games Project.
Lynne Upton, Learning Director from the Children’s University, she said: “We have seen that the programme encourages children to come to school and helps children in the areas they may struggle with.
“Most important is that the children who choose to be part of the programme have fun. Through their individual stories we build a bigger, brighter future nationwide.”
The programme, now in its third year in Stoke, is planned to expand to Malaysia, Singapore and in parts Europe as well as opening the scheme up to 5 – 7 year-olds.
Peter Jones, Widening Participation and Lifelong Learning Coordinator for Staffordshire University and Project Manager for Stoke Children’s University, has been leading the initiative.
He said: “The Children’s University rewards and encourages children who volunteer to learn and engage with the community outside normal school hours.
It’s designed to be a fun, positive learning experience and, because there’s something to aim for, it encourages young people who aren’t normally active to become more involved in their local communities.
Visit the Stoke Children’s University website to learn more about the scheme and the activities available.
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