Helena Kennedy Foundation

By Becky Long

Becky Long has been awarded the Helena Kennedy Foundation Scholarship. We caught up with Becky to ask about her experience.

Where did you find information about scholarships?

I found the information about the Helena Kennedy Foundation through my college. They emailed us about the foundation and gave us the details we needed to take a look. As for scholarships with the university of Kent, I was told about these at an event with the ambassadors and then I found further information on the university website. There is also the opportunity to view scholarships available to each individual on the Kent Vision portal if the student has been given an offer.

What interested you about the physics course?

I have been interested in the Astronomy, Space science and Astrophysics degree for a number of years. I had originally ordered the prospectus about 15ish years ago. So this course has been on my radar for a long time. It’s a unique course. Other universities offer the astrophysics but not the space science side. So I went to college specifically to get the qualifications I needed for this course. I only applied for the foundation year on UCAS (I didn’t have enough maths to go straight onto the degree), I didn’t apply for a second choice.

What was the scholarship application like?

The scholarship application was straightforward. I applied through the Helena Kennedy Foundation website for their one. It was all very self-explanatory. I also applied with the University of Kent for some of their scholarships, this was also straightforward and they usually require a small written piece to go alongside the application. This was easy to upload onto the application via the Kent portal.

Which came first apply for the course or the scholarship?

I needed to apply for the course first.  This was done quite early on through UCAS.

Are there any targets that you have to hit in order to fulfil the scholarship?

Each scholarship came with its own requirements. For the school excellence I needed to get some many points at distinction. I was lucky to get distinction throughout my course and I have been granted the scholarship of excellence. This will be awarded to me when I start my degree as I am currently on my foundation year.

How are you finding the foundation year course for Physics?

The foundation year in physics has been good, I have been really grateful for the course. I would of definitely found the first year of the degree a struggle without the maths that I have learnt on this foundation year. It has also been a tough year, it comes with a full timetable, but this is good preparation for what can be expected going forward. The content has been good, and it tends to cover A level and builds up from there. My lecturers have all been lovely and are never too busy to help if I have needed it.

Are you hoping to stay on for the full degree?

Yes, I am hoping to stay on for the whole degree in Astronomy, Space science and Astrophysics, I am still undecided if I want to just do the BSc or stay on for the integrated Masters.

What are your future plans?

Future plans, this is the big question. To be honest, I have no clue. I like the idea of going into some sort if research but for now I am taking each week as it comes, and I am hoping the degree will guide me on the direction I would like to take.

Is there anything you would like to say in thanks to the Helena Kennedy Foundation?

I would like to thank the Helena Kennedy Foundation for selecting me for their scholarship. It has enabled me to concentrate on my studies and given me the opportunity to explore my academic career by taking some of the pressures off financially through providing me with the scholarship.

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