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GCSE students look ahead to future careers

GCSE students at UTC Reading were already looking ahead to their future careers as they collected their results today (25 August).

The school was celebrating a strong set of results, particularly in its specialist subjects, with an overall 98% pass rate at A*-C (equivalent) in computer science and engineering. Of these passes, 37% achieved the very top grades of A*-A.

Pupils also performed well in English and maths, with 74% of students achieving a grade C or above in both subjects.

As students celebrated securing their place in the post-16 provision at the UTC, many were already thinking ahead to the next steps in their careers.

Adam Maddox was among those favouring an apprenticeship route into his chosen career. Adam, who secured eight passes at A*-C, said: “I am really pleased with my grades, particularly my English language. Two years ago, before joining the UTC, I was predicted to get a D, but I actually got an A. I put it down to the teaching here and the different learning environment. There is a good level of support, and you know what is expected of you, but you also need to take ownership of your studies. 

“I want to pursue a career in engineering, working with one of the top railway companies. I already volunteer on two railways in my spare time and I have met some of the top people at Network Rail during the last two years at the UTC. An apprenticeship seems like a better option to me because I can get a degree level qualification while earning money, as opposed to building up debt at university. When other students will be coming out of university and looking for work, I will already have experience and many apprenticeships lead to a guaranteed job at the end.”

KC Carino achieved the five A*-C grades he needed to study A-levels in computer science, maths and further maths at UTC Reading. He said: “I made a decision to come here two years ago because I wasn’t really achieving my full potential at my old school. I came here and made friends with people who are seriously intelligent and that helped me to focus. I have enjoyed the projects we do. Working in a team with other students creates a strong work ethic, particularly because you learn from the older students and you know they are relying on you to do your best.

“After sixth form an apprenticeship appeals to me because you get experience of working while you gain further qualifications.”

Student Aiden Poysden said: “I am happy that I have got the results I need to get into sixth form. The teaching style and structure of the UTC works much better for me. I knew that I wanted to get into engineering but the only relevant options at my old school was design technology. Coming to the UTC has enabled me to specialise in engineering and do what I really want to do. Since coming to the UTC in Year 10 I started to think about doing an apprenticeship after finishing my studies. I hadn’t really thought about it as an option before, but it now appeals to me more than university. There are a few companies that have caught my interest.”

Caitlin Sutherland achieved a distinction and merit in her BTEC in engineering, as well as Bs in maths and science and a C in English. She said: “I felt really nervous about getting my results today but I am so relieved. The results are a lot better than I thought I would get two years ago. I am going to stay on at the UTC to study engineering and physics and would then like to take up an apprenticeship with a company such as Peter Brett Associates. If that doesn’t work out then university would be the other option.”

Joanne Harper, Principal at UTC Reading, said: “I would like to congratulate all of our Year 11 students on their GCSE results and thank the staff for their hard work. I am particularly pleased to see such high grades in our specialist subjects, which will enable our students to take the next steps in their careers in computer science and engineering. Coupled with excellent pass rates in the key skills of maths and English, these students stand to do very well in their future education and employment.”

  • Active Learning
  • Microsoft
  • Cisco
  • University of Reading
  • Network Rail
  • Peter Brett