CONGRATULATIONS to Old Elean, Eleanor Wallace, who has secured a place at the University of Oxford.

Eleanor, who completed King’s Ely Sixth Form last summer, will be joining St Hugh’s College in October to study History.

Eleanor joined King’s Ely Acremont Nursery in 2005 and she achieved three A*s in her A Levels (History, Religious Studies and Latin), and an A* in her Extended Project Qualification (EPQ).

Speaking about her time at King’s, Eleanor said: “The close-knit, familial nature of King’s makes it so special. I always enjoyed the engagement that staff had with each individual student’s learning. Education at King’s isn’t just focused on teaching the syllabus – it goes far beyond that, creating young people with a genuine interest in learning.”

Eleanor added: “I have been incredibly well supported by King’s, both academically and pastorally. All my teachers and support staff ensured I got the best out of my education. Even after I had left, during my gap year, I was supported in University applications. I will also miss being so close to Ely Cathedral. It is such a beautiful, majestic building and we are incredibly lucky to have it so close.”

Eleanor is cramming lots in during her gap year – some of you may have seen her helping out over at King’s Ely Junior as a Learning Support Gap Assistant last term.

Eleanor said: “I am so pleased that I made the decision to take a gap year. I am working at Topping & Company Booksellers of Ely, which has been a fantastic experience. I especially enjoyed working during the run-up to Christmas and doing their author events. I also plan to visit Spain to put my Spanish – which I have been learning during my gap year – to the test. I have also been doing online courses, on topics ranging from the Women’s Suffrage Movement to revolutionary Europe, both through the Oxford University Department for Continuing Education and FutureLearn, to keep up my History.”

Eleanor says her ideal career after University would be in academia, although having worked at Toppings, she is also now interested in going into publishing. Like so many students at King’s, Eleanor took full advantage of our co-curricular offering, as well as our academic provision.

She said: “Throughout my time at King’s, I enjoyed the many opportunities provided to me by the Music Department. Playing the cello in orchestras and smaller groups, and singing in the Chapel Choir, I participated in many spectacular concerts. I was also an Ely Scheme Instructor, attending stage camps, Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Expeditions, and instructing a range of outdoor activities in the weekly sessions. I was also Editor of the 2021 Student Academic Journal, which was sold to raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK. It included a variety of fascinating and high-quality essays written by other students, which I really enjoyed reading.”

Speaking about our online teaching provision during the pandemic, Eleanor said: “I quite enjoyed online learning during the pandemic, perhaps because of the high quality of online teaching that King’s offered. Lessons were maintained with student-teacher interaction, we had Microsoft Teams meetings with our tutors frequently, and the school even managed to provide us with pre-recorded assemblies and Cathedral Services, so whilst obviously different, King’s kept up the pastoral elements which make it stand out.”

We are so delighted for you Eleanor – enjoy the rest of your gap year and have a wonderful time in Oxford when you start!

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