South Yorkshire education outreach programme launches new regional hub

Pictured are Gemma Styles, Wyn Morgan, and Mike Garnock-Jones at the launch

A regional outreach scheme to increase the number of people from South Yorkshire progressing into higher education has launched a new online hub to inform and support even more young people considering their options.

The Higher Education Progression Partnership (Hepp) works across the Sheffield City Region to encourage more children, young people and adults to consider higher education opportunities, providing impartial information, advice and guidance.

The new ‘HeppHUB’ provides teachers, advisers and other stakeholders with free resources and impartial information they can use to support their learners to make informed choices about higher education options, as well as signposting relevant outreach activity within the Sheffield City Region. The definition of higher education includes degree level courses at further education colleges and universities in addition to higher and degree level apprenticeships.

The launch of HeppHUB, which took place at The Workstation in Sheffield City Centre, was attended by teachers from schools and colleges across South Yorkshire, partners from both Sheffield Hallam University and University of Sheffield, as well as members of local councils and other organisations working with anyone needing advice and guidance about higher education across the Sheffield City Region.

Laura Selby, deputy director, Sheffield Young Carers said: “Working with Hepp has been extremely beneficial for young carers across the region.”

Mike Garnock-Jones, director of Hepp, said: “We are delighted to see the HeppHUB provide impartial information, advice, and guidance on all higher education opportunities to help more young people make the best choices for them individually.”

Wyn Morgan, vice-president for Education at University of Sheffield and Chair of the Hepp board, said: “What we are trying to do is focus on young people from backgrounds and situations who traditionally don’t get the right support or information. The benefit of the HeppHUB is not only that individuals really gain, it’s about the city, the region, ultimately about the economy.”

Gemma Styles, head of Hepp, said: “The HeppHUB means crucially for young people that they’ll get the right advice at the right time. What we’re finding is that part of the problem in South Yorkshire isn’t aspiration, students have the aspiration, what they don’t have is the knowledge of higher education and they don’t know where to go to get that knowledge. By empowering the people those young people look to with the relevant knowledge through our outreach hub, whether it’s a teacher or someone who runs a local football club, we can make sure students are getting the right information.”

The HeppHUB builds on the successful Higher Education Progression Partnership between Sheffield Hallam University and the University of Sheffield, which already provides impartial advice, support and online resources for all schools across The Sheffield City Region, both primary and secondary.

It also supports the targeted work of Hepp’s sister programme, HeppSY, which is part of the Uni Connect programme funded by the Office for Students (OfS). HeppSY works with young people from Year 9 who live in 45 target wards across Sheffield City Region, where the evidence shows that higher education participation is both low and much lower than expected based on GCSE-level attainment. So far the programme has worked with 15.600 young people at 46 schools and colleges.


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