For our first full blog post, we thought we'd go BIG! And they don't come much bigger than Norfolk Children's University's graduation season this year...
Children's University (CU) encourages young people to develop a passion for learning outside of the normal school day. For every hour of extracurricular learning they complete, they get one step closer to being awarded our undergraduate degree, postgraduate degree and, ultimately, our Fellowship award (1,000 hours).
Over 1,200 children from more than 40 schools graduated last week in Norfolk's stonking celebration of their amazing achievements.
Worthy of particular note are 12 year old Alex Skinner and 10 year old Brooke Marjoram, both of whom clocked up over 800 hours of learning with Norfolk CU! These hours have been spent doing a phenomenal range of activities, from dancing and scuba diving to learning circus skills and visiting museums.
Alex even made a video, which was shown at his graduation, showcasing his achievements and the impact that CU has had on his life!
The Norfolk children's hard work, and in particular that of Brooke and Alex, has been a big hit with the local media as well, resulting in an online news story and the two Doctors being invited onto Norwich's Mustard TV to talk about their experience. Check out Alex and Brooke's interview below - they're stars in the making!
Excerpt from The Mustard Show: Episode 298 (18th June 2015) - Many thanks to Ian Rudd from Mustard TV for giving permission to use this clip
Graduations at CUs such as Norfolk's are huge fixtures in the calendar. Modelled on 'grown up' graduations, the children attended an awards ceremony (complete with gowns and mortarboards) at the University of East Anglia. They were then given an interactive tour of the campus to highlight the benefits of attending university.
Raising the profile of the event even further was Norfolk CU's Chancellor, award-winning author of 'Captain Corelli's Mandolin', Louis De Bernières (shown on the right of this picture). He presented awards to the children, taking part in the celebrations.
In a fitting closing comment for our first post celebrating our children's achievements, De Bernières said, "If you want to be successful and get the most out of life, you should go a bit further than you have to. That’s what the Children’s University does - it adds extra quality to children’s learning."
If you have a story about your experiences with Children's University that you'd like to share with us, please get in touch - we'd love to hear from you!