Coloma Convent Girls' School

Coloma C.G.S.

A Voluntary Aided Catholic School for Girls aged 11-18

Post 18 Destinations

We are once again delighted that that our Girls have been very successful in achieving their choices for university places.

Over 90% of our 2015 leavers have accepted places to study at University or on Art Foundation courses, with 40% of these students securing places at Russell Group Universities, with two students gaining places at Oxford University and one at Cambridge.

A full list of destinations can be found in our Forms and Downloads section.

Coloma Careers Programme

Equipping Coloma Students for the Future

At Coloma we recognise that young people in our schools and colleges today face a future that will be very different from that experienced by their parents and teachers. The statutory age for participating in education or training was raised to 17 years in 2013 and to 18 years in 2015. Opportunities in higher education and apprenticeships are changing rapidly. Working life will involve more moves from one job to another than happened in previous generations, and will extend to a later pensionable age. Careers in the 21st century will be quite different from those in the 20th century. Finding “the right job” will be replaced by the need for young people to be equipped with the knowledge, understanding, skills and personal qualities to plan and manage their progression through learning and work. Access to expert and timely careers information , advice and guidance will be important but on its own is neither effective or efficient. Young people also need the knowledge and skills developed through CWRE to make good use of the guidance given and manage their own careers. In short, the role of CEIAG/CWRE has never been more important than now.

Coloma’s Responsibilities & Approach

Coloma has a qualified careers adviser with extensive experience and knowledge in providing impartial guidance both in the independent and state education sectors. Students in Years 9 - 13 have the opportunity to take part in a 1 to 1 guidance interview with our careers advisor. This interview can include examining with the student, career ideas, different qualifications, learning pathways and higher education and what steps towards the students goals may be necessary.

Careers Seminars have been introduced as an effective tool to raise awareness of different professions. Coloma is very lucky to draw upon many of its former pupils who are willing to share their career journey from their time at Coloma to their current professional role. Many are also willing to be e-mentors to current pupils who are considering a particular career path.

Work Experience

This is about giving young people real experience and knowledge of the workplace.

At Coloma, students have this opportunity at the end of their public examinations which is considered the optimum time both in terms of their maturity and personal development and minimising loss of curriculum time during Key Stage 4. At Coloma, students work hard to find their own placements; they are encouraged to find contacts through family and friends. Students are on placement for 2 weeks during which time they are set a number of additional tasks to help them make the most of their time, for example, they write a report to highlight the good and challenging aspects of work, what they learnt about the organisation and the roles of employees, the employability skills they developed and their ideas for a future career.

In recent work experience programmes, students have secured placements in the following professions:

  • Primary and Nursery schools.
  • Medical.
  • Veterinary.
  • Law.
  • Government Departments.
  • Theatre.
  • BT.
  • Investment Banking.
  • Beauty.
  • Hospitality & Catering.
  • Travel & Tourism.
  • IT solutions.
  • Media.
  • Fashion.
  • Retail.
  • Metropolitan Police.
  • Construction.
  • Environmental.
  • Nursing.
  • Engineering.
  • Voluntary Sector.
  • Accountancy.
  • Interior Design & Antiques.
  • Events Management.
  • Architecture.
  • Public Affairs.
  • Performance.
  • Music.
  • Television.
  • Publishing.

Career matching program: Fast Tomato (Years 8-13)

A sophisticated careers and educational guidance program on the internet to help young people to make informed choices at their key decision points in Year 9, Year 11 and Year 13. Fast Tomato appeals to our older students and those who are not discouraged with more in-depth questions and less colour. The end result is similar to Kudos where students’ responses are matched with potential careers. Fast Tomato furthermore provides information about Further Education and Higher Education which match a students educational/qualification profile.

This program has the following advantages:

  • Highly interactive to allow individual research at a student’s own pace in the classroom.
  • Students can up-date their ‘input’ in their own time (program networked throughout the school) and of course can be used at home.
  • ‘Career matches’ identified quickly.
  • They challenge students perceptions of their likes/dislikes matched to careers.
  • Other career areas not previously considered by the student are identified.
  • They provide a good starting point to a discussion with a careers adviser or teacher.
  • They provide a very comprehensive occupational database for careers that students might have already considered.

Careers Events and Activities

Coloma Careers Fair

Coloma hold a bi-annual Careers Fair, at which in previous years over 50 organisations and businesses have been represented. It is a mix of academic and vocational careers and a small number of learning and training providers such as John Ruskin, Jace and Virgo Fidelis, and is open to students in Years 9 - 13.

A variety of companies and training providers attend the event to represent a number of professions, vocations or courses, including but not limited to: policing, law, medicine, teaching, forensics, land-based courses, veterinary, publishing, apprenticeships, the voluntary and charity sector, psychology, accounting, finance, photography, ‘Gap’ year organisers, hospitality, consultancy, childcare, engineering, NHS careers - nursing, midwifery, physiotherapy, information technology, hairdressing, product design and marketing.

Students have the opportunity to speak to individuals who have experience of working in all these professions, and to explore the various progression routes and pathways open to young people interested in a given career area.

Careers Fair 2017

We are very pleased to announce that, following the success of our previous bi-annual Careers Fairs, we will be holding another on the evening of Tuesday, 14th March. Based on feedback from the previous event, we are certain this will be of enormous interest and benefit to all the students. We are extremely grateful to the visiting professionals, who have agreed to give up their time to share their expertise.

A variety of companies and training providers will be attending the event to represent a number of professions, vocations or courses, including: policing, law, medicine, teaching, forensics, land-based courses, veterinary, publishing, apprenticeships, the voluntary and charity sector, clinical psychology, accounting, finance, photography, 'Gap' year organisers, hospitality, consultancy, the armed forces, engineering, NHS careers - nursing, midwifery, physiotherapy, information technology, hairdressing, product design and managing your own business.

Students will have the opportunity to speak to individuals who have experience of working in all these professions, and to explore the various progression routes and pathways open to young people interested in a given career area.

A list of delegates and information regarding their specialism and what they are able to discuss can be found on the first of the following links and on our Forms and Downloads page in the Courses and Departments/Careers section:

Key Stage 5 (Years 12 & 13)

HE Convention

UCAS run a number of Higher Education Conventions across the country. At such conventions over 100 exhibitors are present, the bulk representing universities and colleges across the UK with an increasing number representing EU providers. Other organisations such as the Armed Forces, African Conservation Experience, the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives are also present. To reduce travelling costs and loss of curriculum time during the day, Coloma traditionally attend this event at either Sussex or Surrey in the Spring Term of Year 12. Students undertake some preparatory work prior to the visit so that their visit is both focused and purposeful.

POST 18 Conference

This is a 2 day event run in the summer term of Year 12.

The first day is devoted to an Interview Skills Workshop (run by an external education consultant) where students build on their knowledge and skills developed in Year 8 (MIRG) and Year 10 (Mock Interview) Students explore the “ideal language” for an interview whether it be for college, university or the workplace. In their groups comprising interviewer, interviewee and observer, students are challenged to “present” and critically assess each others performance. During another part of the same day students participate in a “Workplace Awareness” workshop. This involves problem solving and team building activities working with external speakers which draw upon their expertise and experience of working with different organisations.

The second day of the Post 18 conference is the Guest Speakers’ day which hosts 48 speakers during eight, 30 minute sessions. The students have a choice between 6 speakers who offer talks at each of the eight timed sessions. There is, therefore, an opportunity for our students to meet with up to 8 different speakers during the day and find out as much as they can about their areas of interest. Our guest speakers are drawn from a number of different organisations, businesses and universities. Coloma has strong links with ex-students who are either in careers or studying at university and, also keen and loyal support from a number of academic tutors representing Queen Mary London, University College London, St Mary’s Twickenham, Heythrop London, Royal Holloway London, Kings College London, Brighton and the University of East Anglia.

Preparation For University

Preparing to go to University can be a daunting prospect for many students. At Coloma we aim to provide girls with all the support they will need to manage this transition. This ranges from the practical aspects of deciding what courses and careers they wish to pursue, navigating their way through UCAS applications, and writing personal statements to learning about financial management and personal safety.

Through our Personal, Social and Health Education programme, aligned with our extensive Careers, Education, Information, Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) and Careers and Work Related Education (CWRE) provision, we aim to give girls the support , knowledge and confidence they need to take this step successfully.

University Application Support

Through our experienced 6th Form Tutors, Heads of Year and Head of 6th Form along with outside specialist support we aim to provide the girls with all they will need to make a successful application to the Universities of their choice. From personal statements to managing their way through the UCAS application process, Coloma will support students step by step to make sure their applications are appropriate and show the girls , whether through written application or at interview to their maximum potential. Additional support will be available to those students making supported Oxbridge applications, led by a specialist in this field.

Reading List Suggestions for UCAS

Universities will want to see evidence of students’ passion for their chosen subject. This includes relevant literature, periodicals, podcasts and TED talks. Explore relevant themes and works!

You can access lists of some suggested reading on our school intranet by logging on with your school login details here. Additionally, you can use Google to find further recommendations for reading towards your chosen course.

Finally, explore the UCAS website by clicking here.