It is a known fact that 80% of doctors come from 20% of schools, meaning there is a lot of untapped potential.
Future doctors need so much more than just good A-Level grades, we’re also looking for drive, a readiness to learn and the ability to reflect. I believe that there could be many more talented doctors from diverse backgrounds who we’re just not reaching by focusing our entry criteria on good A-Level grades.
With this in mind, I’m delighted that the School has launched its Foundation Year programme to enable us to reach out to students who may not have the desired entry requirements, perhaps as a result of challenging personal circumstances, but who local schools feel have the potential to progress to being great doctors with the right training and support.
Beginning in September 2017, we will be accepting 25 students for our Medicine with Foundation Year degree, with the aim to provide academic, cultural and social support to the cohort. If by the end of the year they reach our required level, the students will then progress onto the first year of our Medicine degree.
The University is consistently one of the most socially inclusive of the UK’s leading universities and has a long-standing commitment to providing fairer and equal access to higher education. This Foundation Year will help us to continue to build on this reputation. We are now recruiting students from the East Midlands area who will be supported by a local charitable trust which is contributing £2 million towards the cost of the course to help ease the debt burden.
We are planning a great programme which should be a fantastic experience for these students who, often through no fault of their own, may not have set their goals high enough to attain three A grade A-Levels.
The programme will help and support the students, with a strong emphasis on developing the study skills that will be necessary for them to succeed in their undergraduate studies and beyond. We are one of a handful of Medical Schools in the country to offer such a crucial programme for widening participation students, and hope to contribute to a national problem of a lack of students from lower socio-economic backgrounds entering the medical profession.
Professor Philip Baker
Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Head of the College of Medicine, Biological Sciences and Psychology
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