Sixth Form is a time of rapid personal growth and maturation right before you set foot into the adult world of higher education or employment. I remember my time at Byron as just that: I did a lot of growing in a short space of time. In my two years at Byron I felt both challenged and guided. My teachers were endlessly encouraging and accommodating in times of self-doubt, and often saw the potential in me before I did, and it motivated me to work very hard. As well as their upholding of academic excellence, the philosophical tangents of my English teachers or Form Tutor often left me inspired and slightly awe-struck, and they set me on the path of finding my own lucidity.
I was exposed to a lot of bright peers from diverse walks of life. I often looked up to them, and have memories of many casual conversations or moments that unexpectedly caused me to reflect on some political or personal issue, or that gave me a better insight into who I was and who I wasn’t. I had the space to experiment with the idea of the person I wanted to be. An environment like that, in those last years of adolescence, is invaluable, and it prepared me for university in that I had a stronger sense of self by the end of the two years than I had going into it.
Coming up to my final year as an English Literature undergraduate I feel immense gratitude for the trajectory my academic and personal development has taken, and the confidence I gained in my capabilities. Byron provided me with a positive space, and knowledgeable, kind people who genuinely wanted the best for me, which allowed me to achieve things beyond my own expectations.