HillsNews July 2017

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HillsNews Summer Newsletter

HillsFest

July 2017

HillsFest is a day for bringing the College community together. We are fortunate that our College comprises individuals who represent a wide range of backgrounds, traditions, languages, faiths and viewpoints. Our College ethos aims to celebrate and value this diversity under a set of shared values and principles, and HillsFest gives us the perfect opportunity to do so. The day started with the ‘Battle of the Bands’. Four student Bands played to a packed audience in the quad and included Zinc (rock band), Maverick (rock band), Push (jazz band), Van Gaugh (Rap).

Push playing at Battle of the Bands

Students were asked to select three activities from a variety of over 80 options, ranging from Archery to Speed Stacking and the Air Boat Challenge to Human Football Table. The day and the sessions on offer are designed to broaden students’ knowledge and interests beyond their A level subjects and encourage them to challenge or develop themselves beyond their formal education. The majority of sessions were largely interactive, encouraging teamwork The winning Tug of War team

Selling cakes at lunchtime

HillsFest organising team, back row: Kenny Jenkins, Ayden Duffy (staff). Front row Charlotte Abbersteen, Liv Hyde, Mel Aksoy, Mollie Gilchrist, Jess Franklin A game of human table football in action!

and offering students something new to try, while inviting them to have fun! Lunchtime brought the final heats of the Tug-of-War competition. Ms Depiot’s tutor group won the final which included a meal at Frankie & Benny’s at Cambridge Leisure! Tutor groups set up stalls to sell cakes and also offered the opportunity for students and staff to have a go at various games too, for a small fee, with the chance to win a prize! Many of the sessions were run by external visitors who donated their time to be with us on the day. Thank you to all involved for another lively and successful HillsFest!


Rosie Cates

Chemistry & Physics Olympiads The Chemistry department held a celebration event on 4th May for Chemistry students who took part in the UK Chemistry Olympiad competition this year. 15 students received the Gold award, 18 received Silver and 13 received Bronze.

Following her success at the sixth European Girls’ Mathematical Olympiad held in Zurich earlier this year (where she won an individual gold medal for the second year running with the UK team placing joint 6th overall), Rosie Cates has now been selected as part of the team for the International Maths Olympiad: www.imo-official.org/ This event (which takes place in Brazil in July) will see Rosie representing the UK in a competition that features teams of students from over 100 countries. Well done and good luck Rosie!

An award ceremony was held on 5th May for Physics OIympiads students. The Chair of the British Physics Olympiad (BPhO), Mr Robin Hughes, presented the students with their certificates. Well done to all students involved.

Chemistry Olympiad Students

Ian Harvey Physics Olympiad Students

Earth Optimism Day Ian Harvey in Sierra Leone

Head of Biology, Ian Harvey travelled to Sierra Leone during the Easter holidays to deliver practical science activities to teachers and students. Schools in Sierra Leone have virtually no practical science because they lack the facilities and the teachers are not experienced or trained to deliver practical science. Ian was part of a collaboration between the University of Makeni in Sierra Leone and the University of Cambridge’s Virology department to embark on devising a programme of educating the people of Sierra Leone about infectious diseases and their prevention in partnership with the charity EducAid. Ian started by training an engagement team of 6 people in Makeni. He then worked with the engagement team to train 24 teachers in Makeni and 24 in Port Loko. Ian then worked alongside the engagement team and EducAid teachers in Port Loko to teach practical science to 50 secondary school pupils! He was asked to evaluate, identify and address limitations in delivering practical science in Sierra Leone.

50 Hills Road students volunteered to help out at the Earth Optimism Day on 22nd April which was held at Cambridge University’s David Attenborough Building. Head of Biology Ian Harvey

said, “The day was totally inspiring with speaker after speaker showing what positive conservation projects can achieve with will, determination and passion.”

Ian Harvey, Head of Biology at Hills Road talking to Sir David Attenborough at Earth Optimisim Day


HR5k Colour Fun Run

Students and staff took part in the 10th annual HR5k Colour Fun Run on 26th April. To date, this event has raised £81,600 for local charities! This year Jez George, CEO of Cambridge United Football Club, officially started the fun run along with former Hills Road student and Cambridge United’s Football Club Community Trust CEO Ben Szreter and Cambridge United football player Will Norris.

Former Hills Road PE teacher Matt Walker, who is now Head of Academy Education at Cambridge United, also came along to support the participants.

Once again all funds raised from the event will go to Teenage Cancer Trust. Special thanks go to ARM for sponsoring the fun run.

Colour Fun Run Raises £7,255 for Teenage Cancer Trust

Following the successful HR5k Colour Fun Run and the 45k cycle sportive in April, students from Hills Road Sixth Form College were delighted to be able to present Judith Anderson of Teenage Cancer Trust with a cheque for the proceeds, which totalled £7,255.15.

Left to right: Rosalie Tribe, Corporate Responsibility Manager at ARM, Charlotte Abbersteen (Hills Road student), Maureen Marsh (Hills Road), Judith Anderson (Teenage Cancer Trust), Kenny Jenkins (HR5k organising team student) and Chloe Langford (Year 10 student on work experience with ARM).


New software for the Language Lab In September 2016, the Modern Languages department found themselves in a difficult position. Their previous Language Lab software, which had struggled for several years to cope with the College’s successive IT upgrades, ceased to be of any practical use to them and a replacement had to be found. Even though they had subscribed to a publisher’s learning platform, they were aware of its limitations when it came, for example, to listening to authentic materials or students conversing with peers. Moreover, the new A level, with its increased demands in skills and content for both speaking and listening, meant that teachers had to change some of their teaching and learning approaches. For example, it would be impossible to prepare students to write listening summaries without them having full control of the listening tracks.

Language Lab being used by students

It was therefore imperative that they acquired new software to enable students to spend a dedicated period of time developing and honing their speaking and listening skills in the Language Laboratory. The SANAKO Study 700 system was chosen because staff wanted to start using the Language Laboratory again immediately. They have not been disappointed in their choice of system. They are now able to integrate seamlessly their learning platform and virtual resources and, with the Study 700, students enjoy the random pairing facilities and the possibility to be corrected discreetly by teachers. Year 13 students also enjoyed the fact that this system is much more reliable. However, for staff the best features were the fantastic training they received prior to using the software, as well as its ease of use. The facility to export all students’ speaking work quickly was considered a revelation for some whilst others enjoyed the teacher controlled playlist tool and the ability to be able to prepare materials ahead of the lesson, as the system is able to remember profiles. They are now looking at enabling students to use resources and the Language lab facilities from their College computers and at home by upgrading next year to the SANAKO Study 1200 version.

Hustings Event

From left to right: Daniel Zeichner, Julian Huppert, Evren Uygun (Chair of the Student Council), Stuart Tuckwood, James Hayward

The Student Council invited local election candidates from four of the main political parties along to the College on 12th May to speak to and answer questions put to them by students at a Hustings in the run-up to the General Election on 8th June. The four candidates were Daniel Zeichner MP for Labour, Julian Huppert for the Lib Dems, Stuart Tuckwood for the

Green Party and James Hayward for the Conservatives. Evren Uygun, Chair of the Student Council started proceedings by asking questions which had been submitted by students prior to the event and then asked students in the audience to put questions to the candidates, which included topics such as transport in Cambridge.

Anglia ITV News talk to Politics Students

Anglia TV’s reporter Elodie Harper talking to Government & Politics students

Elodie Harper from Anglia TV news visited the College on 16th May to talk to Government & Politics students in the run up to the General Election to find out their thoughts on the importance of voting, what

they think about the current age at which young people can vote, and whether they think the age should be lowered to 16 or 17. The students appeared on the Anglia TV News on 18th May.


Employers’ Fair The Careers department held its fourth annual Employer Fair in April. This year 28 local employers set up stands and students had the opportunity to chat informally with them. The aim of the day was to provide students with information about some of the excellent career opportunities available to them including sponsored degrees, graduate schemes after university, internships whilst at university, jobs and apprenticeship schemes straight after A levels, part time jobs, work experience opportunities, summer jobs and gap year opportunities.

Many representatives of the companies were past Hills Road students! The companies included were: Abcam, Addenbrookes, ARM, Army, Navy, RAF, Astra Zeneca, Barclays Bank, Bespak, Cambridge University Press, Charles River Laboratories, Clip & Climb, Cromwell IT, CSR, Deloitte, Ensors, EY, Grant Thornton, Ion, Hill Group, LGC BioScience, Lloyds Bank, Marshalls Aerospace, Mattioli Woods Wealth Management, Mills & Reeve, PEM, Premier Education Group, PwC, Riley Group, Scallywags Nursery, The Jockey Club, 3aaa Apprenticeships.

Students talking to employer representatives at this year’s Employers’ Fair

Maths Partnership The new A Levels in Mathematics and Further Mathematics are becoming more technology focused and Maths teaching staff are busy preparing students for how maths is used in the real world. While some might think a hands-on approach to teaching maths using technology means diving into Excel, the reality is these are not the kind of mathematical technology tools being used by mathematicians in university or industry. Maths staff have chosen the software MATLAB from MathWorks as the their tool because it is used by all of the Russell Group universities in undergraduate STEM studies, as well as being a mathematical computing tool used in aerospace, finance and retail and many other sectors. Collaboration with MathWorks started by creating a series of teaching materials that tied in with the AS Level Further Mathematics. Staff were able to identify some topics that could benefit greatly from how MATLAB could be used to visualise and analyse scenarios. To support this MathWorks developed materials and specially designed apps to introduce students to these topics and how they could use MATLAB to solve problems or have MATLAB pose challenges for different problems. Members of staff from MathWorks had already been supporting Hills Road students who were taking ‘understanding how mathematics is being applied in industry and science’ as an enrichment course.

Independent Learning Award At the inaugural award ceremony at the Sixth Form Colleges Association (SFCA) annual summer conference, Hills Road were the runners up in the ‘Independent Learning’ category. The awards have been devised to showcase the “exceptional practice” within sixth form colleges; we were able to demonstrate in our entry how our whole cohort Extended Project Qualification delivery (which is unique in the sector) provides our students with an excellent opportunity to develop skills in time management, problem solving, research and analysis, critical reflection and communication. Alongside giving examples of some of the stunning projects that we have seen over the years, we were able to demonstrate how the programme that we provide creates a perfect platform for developing Hills Road students into independent learners.

Runner-up certificate for the Sixth Form Colleges Association ‘Independent Learning’ Award

Dr Jasmina Lazic helps with teaching of Year 12 students

Course materials were written and used in the class to teach a range of topics including calculations with complex numbers, graphs of rational functions, considering integrals going onto infinity, handling statistics, decision maths problems, and looking at programming and coding within MATLAB to solve complicated problems. Another important foundation for the course included Head of Maths, Gary Wing being trained to independently develop and work with students on MATLAB. To support this, MathWorks seconded Dr Jasmina Lazic to help in teaching the class for the first year. Together they taught a class of 20 students and took them through each lesson together. The materials were designed to allow students to walk through the lesson at their own pace. Some found the software daunting but this step-by-step approach helped greatly. Others who came into the class with a computing background were able to move much more quickly and independently.


Robotic Fruit Picking Device Visit to World problems. of six students presented Bhaktivedanta Manor the resultsAofgroup The Hills Road team were Alex Blair, a six month project working with engineers from ARM at the Engineering Education Scheme Celebration and Assessment day at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) research laboratories in Ware on 28th April. The event involved teams from 24 schools and colleges in the East of England who had been working with industrial sponsors on projects aiming at solving real

George Hunt, Lizzie Martin, Tom McCubbin, Dan Moss and Arjun Tapasvi. They worked together to design a prototype for a robotic fruit-picking device. The students took models of parts of their design and presented their plans to a panel of judges.

Bhaktivedanta Manor

In April a group of Year 12 Religious Studies students spent the day at the Hindu community of Bhaktivedanta Manor, home of ISKCON, better known as the Hare Krishnas. The day included a tour of their farm, gardens and primary school, with a visit to see their herd of cows and dairy where they produce their own butter and yoghurt. Students and staff were taken there in a colourful cart pulled by two huge and very well-trained bulls. This was followed by a lecture on the history and present beliefs and practices of the community. They then attended worship in a temple inside the manor house (given to them by George Harrison of The Beatles). A vegetarian lunch was served by the devotees who are used to cooking for thousands of pilgrims at festivals. They were then entertained by a session on Indian devotional music and chant, and also dressed in Indian clothes. The day ended auspiciously with a visit to their excellent shop!

From left to right: Dan, Arjun & Thomas with the prototype of their fruit-picking device

Robotics Team Success

Sociology From Monday 8th to Wednesday 10th May the Sociology team ran a series of visits to the Cambridge Crown Court. The visit gave students a fascinating insight into the workings of the criminal justice system and enriched their understanding of the Crime and Deviance section of the Sociology A level course. From left to right: Kieran Edney, Josh Holland, Simon Beal, Archie Godfrey, Sasha Shtyrov, Sam Ross, Jakub Hajdus, Lizzie Howells, Aleks Gorkowienko, Catherine Lawes, Joe Morton, Peter Burton, Kazuo Newcombe, George Cliff

Cambridge Crown Court

A group of students recently took home two awards from the National Student Robotics competition 2017 with their autonomous Portal themed robot. The students, known as Team Systemetric were able to build their latest robot with the help of corporate sponsorship. After four months of testing and two days of frantic competition they secured second place against 50 teams from the UK and Germany. The robots were programmed to locate different ‘tokens’ from the arena and return them to their ‘home zone’ while avoiding 3 other robots attempting to do the same in each round. The robots used a camera to autonomously identify their targets and negotiate the arena and had a range of strategies to cope with different situations during the game. Team Systemetric were also

awarded the ‘Team Image’ prize for their Portal Companion Cube themed robot, Team costumes and Twitter feed: @systemetriclabs The team’s Captain, Peter Burton said, “It’s amazing to see that the effort the team put into the robot this year has paid off, congratulations to everyone involved!” Following their strong performance at this competition, Team Systemetric has been shortlisted to represent the United Kingdom at the inaugural FIRST Global Robotics Competition in Washington, DC, USA where teams from across the world will be competing in July. The team’s success was helped by the generous funding from Cambridge Medical Robotics, the dedication of David Massey, teacher at Hills Road Sixth Form College, and mentorship given by Will Munns.


Talented Composers

From left to right: Alex Woolf, Margherita Taylor, Alexia Sloane

The Music department are celebrating as two of their Music students (from seven nationally exceptional young composers) have been selected by Classic FM and the Royal Philharmonic Society to write a new piece of classical music to celebrate Classic FM’s 25th birthday. They are current student, Alexia Sloane and Alumnus Alex Woolf. The Classic FM 25th birthday commissions in partnership with the Royal Philharmonic Society (RPS) have been created to champion Britain’s outstanding young musical talent. Any person born on or after their first broadcast on 7th September 1992 could apply to Classic FM’s 25th Birthday Commissions. From almost 200 applications, 16-year old Alexia Sloane and 21-year old Alex Woolf from Cambridge have been commissioned to write a three-minute piece of music each. Alexia will compose a chamber piece, while Alex will write for the flute and piano. His piece will be performed by the world-renowned flautist Sir James Galway. Both their works will be recorded and broadcast on-air to Classic FM’s 5.4 million listeners across the UK. Alexia is a synaesthetic blind First Study Composer at the Royal College of Music Junior Department. She is also one of six composers with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and was an Aldeburgh Young Musician in 2015/2016 – making her the first blind composer and musician to be accepted on both schemes. In addition, Alexia is one of only four composers with the Britten Sinfonia Academy. She was the first female young composer to win The Cambridge Young Composer of the Year Competition with her piece Passiflora and she was recently highly commended in the BBC Proms Inspire 2017 Competition with her piece Longing for Equinox. Alexia started composing when she was 12 years old and loves to write for unusual combinations of instruments, using her synaesthesia as a source of inspiration. Her ambition is to study Music at Cambridge and complete a postgraduate degree in

Composition at a Conservatoire. She would like to become a professional composer or pursue a career in musicology. Alexia said: “I think that music is a great way of bringing people together and I suppose this is one of my main aims as an artist. Opportunities to reach such audiences, particularly as a young 16-year old composer not yet established in the industry, are very rare, as is the chance to write for incredible and most inspiring musicians such as those associated with the RPS.” Alex Woolf has already composed music for a wide range of artists and ensembles, including the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House and his work has been performed across the UK, as well as in Holland, Italy, Germany, France, China and the United States. He studied A levels at Hills Road and went on to read Music at St John’s College in Cambridge, graduating in 2016 with a triple First Class Honours degree, and he is now studying at the Royal Academy of Music. He was commissioned to write Three Tempestuous Tunes for acclaimed tenor Nicky Spence’s debut album, recorded with pianist Malcolm Martineau. These songs received their US premiere in California in March 2015. Alex is currently a member of the London Symphony Orchestra’s Panufnik Composers Scheme, writing music for the LSO to be premiered next year. Alex said “I’m incredibly excited to be writing a 25th birthday commission for Classic FM.” “Sir James Galway is a dream performer to have the opportunity to compose for, and as Classic FM has been a permanent fixture of my musical upbringing, it’s a real privilege to contribute to their birthday celebrations in this way!”

It has been announced that Year 12 student Dom Wills is a winner of the 2017 National Centre for Early Music (NCEM) Young Composers Award. Dom started learning the piano when he was 7 years old which led to his interest in composition. When he was 13, he joined Aldeburgh Young Musicians (AYM), a Centre for Advanced Training for young musicians in East Anglia. He also has regular composition lessons in London. Dom said, “For the competition I set the Latin prayer Salve Regina for five vocal parts.” “I find setting Latin texts quite challenging because I am unfamiliar with the language, but I enjoy writing for voices.” “It was a privilege to hear my piece performed by professional musicians. In the future I hope to study composition at university or conservatoire.” The award was presented by the NCEM in association with BBC Radio 3 and the internationally acclaimed vocal ensemble The Tallis Scholars, directed by Peter Phillips. At the Aldeburgh Festival on 19th June, Matthew Rose and the Albion String Quartet performed Dom’s ‘Over the rolling waters go’, an eleven minute piece. There was some very effective string writing with a new and different take on Tennyson’s ‘Sweet and Low - Wind of the Western Sea’. Well done Dominic!

Dom Wills


Essay Prize Winners

Cherry Dicko won first prize forThe Philsophy Essay Prize 2017

Three Hills Road students, Cherry Dicko, Helen Markus and Georgia Mitchell recently received awards in the Newnham College’s (University of Cambridge) annual essay prizes which were awarded to them by the Principal of Newnham College, Professor Dame Carol Black. Newnham College’s annual essay prize competitions are designed to encourage ambitious female sixth-form students to explore university-level subjects and themes and to develop their independent research and writing skills. The exceptional academic talent of Year 12 female students was celebrated by Newnham College at a prestigious ceremony in Cambridge for essay prize-winners. Jo Tynan, Communications Director at Newnham College said “We received a record number of entries in each category this year, so Cherry, Helen and Georgia did very well indeed.”

The Hills Road Quiz The Hills Road Quiz took place on 27th April. This was an event for Hills Road students and was organised by student Lewis Pitchford for his Extended Project. All funds raised from the quiz were donated to Cancer Research UK. There was enough space for 20 teams in the Hall, with up to 4 people on each team. The teams were asked to turn up early to secure a place as space in the Hall was limited. Indeed, a number of teams unfortunately had to be turned away as there were no more tables available! The number of people who turned up on the day was significantly higher than expected, which was brilliant! With 20 teams, most of which had 4 people, they were ready to battle it out for the main prize – a free Nando’s platter! Lewis welcomed everyone to the event and briefly explained how the quiz was going to work. The first round was based around the popular gameshow ‘Pointless’, with each team needing to give an answer that was correct, but as obscure as possible, to take forward the most points into the next round. The second round was based on ‘The Chase’ and this had one member from each team up on their feet using whiteboards to try to answer as many questions as possible correctly to escape the Chaser. The Chaser was randomly selected as the team member from Team 11, so he had to answer his questions correctly to catch as many teams as possible. The majority of teams did manage to evade the Chaser, so

lots of points for them but not many for Team 11 unfortunately! The scores from these two rounds were calculated and the teams with the three highest scores went through to the final. Commiserations to the remaining 17 teams, but they were outperformed by these 3 teams! The final round was quick-fire trivia, with each team having 1 minute to correctly answer as many questions as possible. There was a mixture of questions in the pack, some being a lot easier than others, and they had been shuffled, so this round also came down to getting the easy questions! Team 5 kicked off the final, answering 7 questions correctly. However, this was bettered by Team 14, who got 9 right, putting them into the lead before Team 20 answered their questions. The pressure was now on Team 20 now, however, they withstood the pressure and managed to get 12 questions right (although some may say they got lucky with the questions – they were rather easy). Team 20 were the winners and they took home the Nando’s prize! Congratulations to Team 20, as well as Team 14 who finished 2nd, and Team 5 who finished 3rd! It seemed as though everyone enjoyed the event, which is brilliant, but what tops it off is the fact that everyone who attended contributed to raise an incredible £103.44 for Cancer Research UK, which is much more than Lewis was expecting! Well done Lewis.

Helen Markus won joint 3rd prize for the History Essay Prize 2017 Lewis at the Quiz in the Hall which he organised as an event for his Extended Project

Philosophy

Georgia Mitchell won 3rd prize for The Woolf Essay Prize 2017

The Philosophy team are organising a ‘consent workshop’, the aim being to create an opportunity for young people to provide input into how consent is taught in sex and relationships education. From talking to educators in the USA, it seems that there is a danger that the curriculum fails to address the issues that

young people consider the most relevant to their lives. The insight gained from the Philosophy students will feed into a report bringing together opinions and ideas from a variety of areas, including the Civil Service and Whitehall.


Performing Arts

Lovesong is a beautiful piece of dance theatre (by Frantic Assembly) that sees an ageing couple look back on their younger selves. We see the tricks that memory can play and are wracked with

Dance pity as we learn that one of them no longer wants to descend gracefully into old age. Superb performances from Hannah Jones, Tom Howard, Connor Day and Verity Lambert and a brilliant directorial debut from James Malone.

Dance performance in the Robinson Theatre

A scene from Lovesong

Disco Pig is a prime example of what has become known as ‘in-yer-face’ theatre. A stunningly visceral and poetic text (by Enda Walsh) sees two Dublin teenagers running riot on an increasingly self-

destructive binge. With extraordinary skill and sophistication, Beth Hargrave and Peter Silver created great comedy and invited huge pathos for these damaged characters as jealousy and violence ultimately drive them apart.

Dance students went on their annual outing to see the wonderful work of Matthew Bourne, this time his stunning production of The Red Shoes – a brilliant adaptation of the 1948 film. They also went on a visit to see the powerful and intoxicating ‘Milonga’ by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, a piece based on the energetic and fiery movement of Tango. Industry professional and former Hills Road student, Josh Sinclair, treated students to a thoroughly enjoyable and engaging workshop on the musical Wicked. Students have produced some brilliant work this year, with a stunning showcase of dance work.

A scene from Disco Pigs

Fusion Theatre & Dance Festival

Dance performance in the Robinson Theatre

Extended Project performances have continued with great success, featuring a programme of original dance pieces choreographed and produced by the indefatigable Harriet Beynon. Josh Griffin directed a quite excellent production of Pinter’s disturbing and witty The Dumb Waiter and Katya Mann cut her directorial teeth on Jake Davies’s clever original play Uniform.

Students performing at the Fusion Festival on 24th June

The third Fusion Theatre and Dance Festival took place on 24th June and once again was curated and organised by three brilliantly energetic and capable former students Eden Harbud, Jack Bentinck (Hills Road), Finn Morrell (Long Road) plus two of this year’s Hills Road Performing Arts interns, Sophie McMahon and Grace Johnstone. Together they arranged free use of the Junction’s core drama spaces as

well as the full support of their staff. They have also brought together performances from schools, sixth forms, youth theatres, dance troupes, comedians and musicians in an incredibly rich celebration of young people’s performance performed both at the Junction and at Hills Road. This is a quite extraordinary achievement and one of which we are very proud.

A scene from Uniform


Taster Day

English Conference

The College hosted a Taster Day on 30th June for Year 10 pupils from local schools. The day is designed to give prospective students a ‘taste’ of what life would be like if they were to come to Hills Road Sixth Form College to study A levels.

Hills Road students guiding Year 10 pupils around the College at the Taster Day on 30th June

Julie Francis

Julie Francis after running in the London Marathon

Professor Catherine Belsey talking to English students about Hamlet

The English Conference, which has been a fixture on the College calendar for a number of years, took place on Wednesday 5th and Thursday 6th July. This is always a well-received event that allows students to hear lectures from a number of experts in their field. Speakers included Dr Gavin Budge from the University of Hertfordshire speaking about Larkin and also the Great Gatsby, Dr Simon Featherstone from the De Montfort University in Leicester who gave a lecture

on Colonialism, Postcolonialism and Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Professor Catherine Belsey an author whose specialist subjects are Shakespeare and Critical Theory and Dr Antonella Palmieri, a senior lecturer at the University of Lincoln, who gave a lecture on Italian cinema: Ferzan Ozpetek’s la Finestra de Fronte.

Alumnus Alex Woolf’s tribute to retiring Principal, Linda Sinclair

Congratulations to Julie Francis, PA to the Assistant Principals and Clerk to the Corporation, who ran in this year’s London Marathon for the first time. She covered just over 548 miles in 87 hours of training. She raised £747 for Cancer Research UK. Well done Julie!

Jack Perry

Huge congratulations to Hills Road Alumnus Jack Perry who recently played in the World Under-23 Wheelchair Basketball Championships in Toronto, Canada, at which no British team has ever medalled. Jack and the GB team won Gold and thus are world champions! A remarkable achievement by Jack who has also just graduated from Leeds University. Alex Woolf conducting Hills Road musicians at Ely Cathedral

Well done to all staff and performers involved with the superb concert at the magnificent Ely Cathedral on 26th April. There was a high standard of musicianship from all the ensembles. The inaugural performance of Inward Light, composed and conducted by Hills Road Alumnus, Alex Woolf to mark the occasion The GB Wheelchair Basketball team in Toronto

of Principal Linda Sinclair’s retirement was a special highlight and had been kept a secret from her. This was a really special and memorable evening - the last concert with us for many of our current Year 13 musicians. Thank you for all you have contributed to Hills Road music!


Going Wild in the Dales The annual Duke of Edinburgh training expedition to the Yorkshire Dales took place over the bank holiday weekend 29th April - 1st May. The trip was composed of 40 Year 12 students who were divided into six walking groups. The expedition aims were to train the students in map skills, navigation, camp craft and emergency first aid, as well as completing 45km in mountainous country and wild camping. The weather was kind to us, with a dry weekend but a relatively cold one, especially at night. The first day involved a good deal of

training and ended at a wild camp on the flanks of Ingleborough near Gaping Gill. For many this was their first experience of wild camping, drinking water from a stream, with the added luxury of no toilets – well you have to dig your own! Day two for most groups involved the climb to the peak of Ingleborough, however the wind had got up overnight leading to tricky conditions with a gusting 60mph wind on the top. The students coped admirably with these conditions under the guidance of an excellent support team and mountain leaders.

The last class of World Development at Hills Road

The last lesson of the one-year A level World Development took place during the week of 15th May. The course has been running at Hills Road since 2009 and has provided students with a valuable chance to excel in a new subject. Year 13 student Jamie Tipple said, “World Development was a lifeline that quickly became a favourite.” “The teaching was incredible as was the support. I’m so pleased that this opportunity to succeed was available and I wish it was a full 2 year A level.” The Geography department staff are sad to see the end of the course due to the A level curriculum review and wish their colleagues in Psychology and Film Studies every success in delivering the new one year A level options for students from September 2017.

Duke of Edinburgh students hiking in the Dales

Camp on day two was a beautiful spot on a lush green river terrain on the banks of Cam Beck. The evening camp was lively and all the students were glad to be in camp eating volumes of pasta, rice and various sauces, and looking forward to a good sleep to recover from a long day. The final day involved a 10km walk to Horton-in-Ribblesdale where a full English

Farewell to World Development

breakfast awaited them at the Pen-y-Ghent Café. All arrived safely and apart from a few cases of bad blisters there were no casualties! A long sleep followed on the bus home. The trip was enjoyed by all and was a great success. We look forward to the practice expedition in the Lake District 10th – 13th July.

Golf & Pole Vaulting Successes

Kevin Jones, D of E Leader

James McLaughlin & Chloe Ashman

Duke of Edinburgh students taking a well earned break

James McLaughlin and Chloe Ashman both won Bronze at the Cambridgeshire Schools Scratch competition. James also came 2nd in the South East Regional Boys’ Golf Championship 2017, held at White Tees, West Essex. In addititon, James finished 8th in the English Schools’ Golf Association (ESGA) Boys’ National Championships 2017. His performance earns him a call-up to represent England v Scotland later this summer. Congratulations James. Also, congratulations go to students Oscar Jopp and Keira Hicks who both won their respective Under 20s Pole Vaulting competitions, representing Cambridge Schools in the Anglian Schools Athletics Competition on Sunday. Oscar also won the 110m hurdles.


Sports Awards

AoC Sport National Championships

The Annual Sports Award Evening was again held at the Hilton Hotel on 28th April and was well supported by the various teams and individuals that have represented the College in numerous different sports. The evening culminated with three final awards to the female and male personalities, and team of the year. Shaun Rackley was presented with his award for Sportsman of the Year from Mr Duffy for his outstanding contribution in rowing, basketball and volleyball. Women’s Hockey team

Shaun Rackley - Sportsman of the Year

The Netball team

Harriet Barker - Sportswoman of the Year

Harriet Barker won Sportswoman of the Year for her contribution as a hockey player, her captaincy, her coaching of the women’s team in addition to being selected to represent the British Colleges Hockey team that will play Spain this summer. The Netball Team won the College’s coveted ‘Team of the Year 2017’ trophy. They were undefeated in the AoC Division 1 league, the County Schools’ Tournament and the AoC Regional Tournament and went forward to represent the East Region at the National Championships where they won Bronze.

The Netball Team - Team of the Year

The Badminton team

It was a very exciting and tense weekend at the University of Nottingham for the Association of Colleges’ Sport National Championships in April where Hills Road were competing for the East region in 11 out of the 13 sports that were represented. The Hills Road Women’s Hockey team tied on points for first place but

were awarded the bronze medal on goal difference. The Netball team tied on points in second place but again were also awarded bronze on goal difference. The Hills Road Badminton team won the silver medal in the AoC Sport National Knock-out Cup.

College Fund Help celebrate the success of Hills Road Sixth Form College and enable us to continue to provide an outstanding experience for the next generation of students. We hope that you will feel able to be part of the College’s ongoing success by making either a monthly or a one-off donation. In these challenging and austere times, your generosity has never been so vital. Thank you. PRODUCTION NOTES Articles and photographs for this edition of HillsNews were produced by Amélie Bowers Vivien Brownlee, Ian Cutting, Ayden Duffy, Julie Francis, Richard Fredman, Ian Harvey, Ann Hemming, Kevin Jones, Cany Machin, David Massey, Cathy Michell, Jon Phelan, Tom Roegele, Jonathan Sansom, Linda Swain, Shelley Tenberg


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