Tenterden students embark on their university studies

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Omar Alsalih with Homewood School Principal and Sixth Grade Center Jeremy Single

Submitted for publication by Tenterden Schools Trust

The first few weeks at college are always a special and exciting time for freshmen every year, but they’re especially exciting for two alumni from Homewood School and the Sixth Form Center in Tenterden.

Liam Macmillan, 19, from Cranbrook, had been eager to take his place to study English at Cambridge since graduating at A level this summer, earning A *.

Liam is the second comprehensive school student to win a place at Oxbridge in consecutive years, following in the footsteps of former student Isabel Burns who successfully fought authorities in 2020 to take her place at Cambridge.

In addition to his A * in English Literature, Drama and Theatrical Studies, and Fine Arts, Liam also received an A * for his Extended Project Rating (EPQ) where he wrote, printed, stitched and bound his own short story. as an artifact submission. Set in historical context, the novel explored currently relevant themes of slavery, racial prejudice, camaraderie, and sexual orientation.

Homewood alumnus Liam MacMillan

Omar Alsalih, 20, is excited to take a place at the University of Brighton to fulfill his dream of studying for an architectural foundation. Omar, born in Syria, arrived in Kent at the age of 16 as a Jordanian refugee in 2017 with his parents and four siblings as part of the UK resettlement program.

When he arrived, Omar had no more than a word or two of English and had missed nearly five years of schooling due to the need for him to work from the age of 12 to support his family financially.

Through Homewood’s transformative education and support, Omar was able to complete a number of GCSEs, an AS math level, a level three certificate in finance, and a level A in ceramics, and successfully apply to the university.

A scholarship funded by a group of lawyers in London, offered as part of the Tunbridge Wells Welcomes Refugees initiative, provided the financial support that enabled Omar to afford his place at the university.

Omar’s interest in architecture began completely by accident when he started a GCSE ceramics course at Homewood.

He said: “What inspired me is the thoughtful thinking it takes to plan and design beautiful miniature homes to ensure they remain structurally sound.

“In addition, the practical nature of creating something by hand from a drawing and the ability to view the finished work was very appealing, as well as the beauty of designing and adapting the house to its surroundings.

“In the future I would love to be able to design and build unique homes that are both environmentally friendly and structurally sound, first here in the UK, but someday I want to return to Syria to help with the process. reconstruction there. “

Omar’s younger brother and sister are among the Syrian refugee children currently studying at Homewood.

Homewood Principal Jeremy Single said, “The fantastic accomplishments of Liam and Omar are a testament to the breadth and depth of the high quality education that Homewood has to offer, enabling every student to achieve their best. real potential.

“I wish them both, and all of our 2021 graduates, the best of luck as they begin their university and college journey. They’ve all been through a difficult 18 months of obstacles and uncertainties, so I hope they can now enjoy a successful transition to this exciting stage in their life.

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