- 20/09/10 - Strode Welcomes New International Students
Strode College welcomed five new A level students from Hong Kong this week with a special lunch hosted by Assistant Principal Philippa Piper. They were joined at the lunch by other international students, staff and local families who are sharing their homes with the new students.
Philippa Piper said: "Studying in the UK offers good value for money for international students because the quality of teaching and the international status of UK qualifications are high. Strode's high academic achievements are attractive to international students and their parents. Of equal importance is the personal support we provide for the young people who travel so far from home to study here. This is essential to help them enjoy their experience and reach their full potential. Their future success will reflect well on the College and bring economic and cultural benefits to the whole community."
Many of Strode's international students live in accommodation provided by local families as part of the College's 'Homestay' scheme. Annabel Mitchell, Strode College's Accommodation and Welfare Officer, runs the scheme. She explained why it is so important: "Living in a caring and supportive home whilst studying helps our international students settle quickly. They get to share a family home and experiences, and enjoy home comforts and support. In return the host families benefit by learning about new cultures and there is some financial benefit too."
New student Heidi Woo is studying Chemistry, Human Biology, Environmental Science and Maths and hopes to become a pharmacist in the future. Heidi and her parents were particularly attracted to Strode because of the opportunities for learning through practical experiments as part of her studies. She said: "Everyone here is really nice and very friendly. The lifestyle is more relaxed and slower paced than in Hong Kong, but I like the nature around here and I've enjoyed visiting Bristol and Bath."
Heidi is living in Street with Sarah Cruwys as part of Strode's Homestay scheme. Sarah said: "I admire Heidi for travelling so far to study at this stage in her life; I think she's very brave. I'm looking forward to getting to know her and to helping her through such a major time in her life. I'm only ten years older than Heidi so I can't be her parent figure, but I can be her friend and offer support and guidance. "
Families in Street and Glastonbury who might be interested in providing a home to one of Strode's international students in the future can call Annabel Mitchell for an informal chat on 01458 844477.
Photo: Strode College’s new international students with some of the local people whose homes they are sharing (Heidi Woo middle front row and Sarah Cruwys back row far right).