On completing her Year 11 at Portslade Aldridge Community Academy (PACA) Guowei Yang, has big aspirations for a career in the medical world, and thinks that her time and opportunities at the Academy helped this.

“I want to go to university to do a science degree, perhaps in chemical engineering. I want to help invent new medicines for new illnesses, or better medicines.” Her interest comes from watching programmes and seeing people who need help. “I think it is really nice to help people and I want to make the world a healthier place.”

Guowei feels that her opportunities and experiences at PACA helped her to challenge herself. “STEM has given me more opportunities to extend myself. I think that lessons were good but I needed to be extended more – and I think that competitions we could also take part in did that”.

Before her GCSEs Guowei took part in the Top of the Bench Chemistry Olympiad. As the oldest in a team of mixed ages, she had to help her team understand the topic given to them, before they took tests and were assessed by the judges. “The preparation before really helped me with my GCSE, because I was making sure I knew what I needed to. It was also good experience in leadership” says Guowei.

Guowei earned herself a place on a STEM summer residential at Imperial College London, where the application was akin to applying for university, providing more practice in writing personal statements.

Guowei feels that the Aldridge Attributes around learning have prepared her for life after PACA. “I was the sort of person who would get stuck and ask for help, but to cover the attributes I would problem-solve myself and that really helped me. Now if I

get stuck on an everyday problem I feel confident to solve it myself, instead of always asking my parents for help.”

“I think that PACA really cares about their students and the opportunities that they give them. If students need help they will help them. If they need extending they will give them opportunities, so their potential is unlocked.”