Supporting student progression: Exeter Scholars

Here at the University of Exeter, we think it’s really important to support all students to make informed decisions about Higher Education and help them decide whether it’s the right pathway for them. Our longitudinal access programme, Exeter Scholars, does just that! Exeter Scholars is designed to give participating students the opportunity to find out more about the options available to them and to experience a ‘taster’ of university life. There are opportunities for students in the South West of England to join the programme in Year 9, Year 10, and Year 12, and the support continues right through until the end of Year 13 (and beyond, if they go on to study at the University of Exeter)!

Along with the opportunity to experience university life through regular visits to our campuses, the Exeter Scholars programme aims to equip students with transferrable skills to help them with their current and future studies. Students can expect to develop their communication, problem-solving, and organisational skills through participating in the programme. They will also have the opportunity to meet other like-minded students and make new friends and networks, developing their confidence.

In Year 12, students also get the opportunity to specialise into a subject of interest through participating in a subject activity strand. The subject activity strand sessions are led by academics at the University who are experts in their field! Students will get the opportunity to explore world-leading research and have access to our fantastic facilities here at the University, including laboratories, archives, the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum, and even the Clinical Skills Resource Centre at the Royal Devon and Exeter hospital. This experience makes an excellent addition to any UCAS personal statement!

Alongside all of the decision-making and transferable skills development benefits of participating in Exeter Scholars, there are also many tangible benefits for students who complete the programme. These include a reduced offer to study any undergraduate course at the University of Exeter, consideration for bespoke scholarship awards, careers advice, and a ‘transition to student life’ financial support package for students who go on to study with us at Exeter.

Please do visit our website – – for further information about the programme, pathways, eligibility criteria, and benefits. Applications are currently open for Year 12 South West students, with applications due to close at midnight on Wednesday 25th November. Please do feel free to encourage your students to apply! Students in year 12 can apply themselves, and do not need to put forward or nominated by their school in order to be considered.

Perhaps we should end with a quote from a recent alumna of the programme – who better to explain the benefits of taking part? Bethan is now a first year BSc Economics and Politics student at the University of Exeter; she completed the Exeter Scholars Year 12 South West pathway with us last year. Reflecting on her time on the Exeter Scholars programme, Bethan says: ‘The Exeter Scholars programme gave me a genuine feeling of belonging to a community and allowed me to meet Exeter students and staff before I even started university, which has been invaluable. I would definitely encourage students to apply for Exeter Scholars. It gives you a unique opportunity to explore what you think you would like to study and helps you make informed decisions.’

-Hayley Stentiford, Outreach Officer


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