Student Wellbeing Team Wins National Autism Award
The Student Wellbeing team has won a prestigious accolade at the National Autistic Society’s Autism Professionals Awards. The team was nominated for its WOW Summer School and was awarded the Inspirational Education Provision award for higher and further education at a special ceremony in Harrogate on 7 March 2018.
The WOW Summer School was developed by the Student Wellbeing team and gives potential students the opportunity to develop coping strategies to deal with some of the challenges they may face in advance of enrolling on a course in September of each year.
The 3 day programme of events, which includes a two night stay on campus, provides students with experience of academic sessions, orientation of the city and campus, meeting the Students’ Union, social events, and budgeting and finance. The Student Wellbeing team remain on site 24/7 to help support students while making every very effort to ensure that they receive an experience that reflects real university life.
Questionnaires are completed following the programme and feedback has been extremely positive, indicating that the aims of the summer school are being met in terms of the students’ perceptions of the experience. The results indicate that the experience offers a significant and positive impact for students in terms of their retention and progression levels in their chosen programme of study. Students also reported feeling less anxious about starting in September.
Julie Spencer Head of Student Wellbeing said: “The judges felt our summer school was leading the way in innovative autism practice, showed an outstanding contribution and achievement and that we demonstrated excellence, dedication and commitment to improve opportunities for our students with autism.
“We are absolutely delighted to have won such a prestigious award, the WOW summer school is approaching its 4th year and already we can see the benefit the school has provided to our students. This award is recognition that the approach we take is effective for our students.”