Two young people in care have become among the first to graduate from a special programme designed to help them embark on a journey towards higher education.

Aspire2Uni is a progressive programme for young people in care who are in Year 7 upwards. Working in partnership with Virtual Schools from 5 local authorities within the West Midlands including the City of Wolverhampton Council, Aspire2Uni has been successfully running at the University of Wolverhampton since 2015.

Outreach days, enrichment events and mentoring activities are offered to support the young people to embark upon their journey into higher education.

Aspire2Uni held its first graduation event last month, with 2 young people in care from Wolverhampton among those to graduate, proudly wearing their official black gowns as they were presented with certificates which celebrated their commitment to the programme. They now plan to go onto university next month. 

One said: "The Aspire2Uni is designed to give insight into what university would be like and I would recommend it to any young person in care who wants to go onto university. The staff members are the most dedicated and passionate people I have ever met and the amount of effort they put into enhancing the experience is hard to describe in words alone.”

Meanwhile the Aspire2Uni team extended congratulations to a Year 10 student from Wolverhampton who was selected as mentee for the academic year. His punctuality when attending sessions, and the enthusiasm and dedication he has shown when participating was described as ‘fantastic’ by programme staff.

Councillor Chris Burden, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Education, Skills and Work, said: "The Aspire2Uni  programme is proving to be incredibly successful, and I am delighted that the first students have now graduated and are looking forward to going onto university this autumn.

"I would like to congratulate our 2 young people in care who were among this year's graduates, and also our Year 10 pupil who was selected as a mentee in recognition of his commitment to the programme."