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The Summer Symposium is one of the key events in the NEON calendar. The 11th annual NEON Summer Symposium is on Thursday 6th and Friday 7th July 2023 at University of Exeter. The theme will be: Three is the magic number – rethinking the education system to widen access.
As the education sector continues to recover from the pandemic inequalities in both access and success to higher education (HE) persist. Having a diverse range of routes offers learners a great deal more choice and the opportunity to remove some of the barriers that can impede their journey into, and through HE. Not only is this of benefit to disadvantaged learners in schools and colleges, but also to those returning to education such as mature students. Understanding the diversity, and potential of these routes is key for access practitioners, but do we also need to think about a more joined up approach and adopt a tertiary system of education across the United Kingdom?
This year’s Symposium will therefore focus upon the range of routes that are available to allow learners to progress into HE, and debate the potential merits of adopting a tertiary system of education across the UK in order to improve the transition of disadvantaged learners. It will consider how HE needs to adapt its practice to allow all learners to make a successful transition into HE, and secure successful student outcomes. We will discuss the types of prior qualifications that learners have achieved and whether these have prepared them for studying in the HE environment. We will also look at degree apprenticeship provision, what HE can do to help expand this and how we can support these learners to feel part of the HE community.
The 2022 event had over 250 delegates attend from across the country, making it the most well-attended to date.
The event brings together key figures from across the education sector, policymakers, employers and organisations committed to social mobility through widening access to HE – making the Summer Symposium the most important event for those working in the field.
Keynote speakers include:
- The RT Hon Robert Halfon, Minister of State for Skills, Apprenticeships and Higher Education
- Matt Western MP – Labour Shadow Minister for Higher Education
- John Blake– Director of Fair Access and Participation, Office for Students (OfS)
- Professor Peter John CBE, Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive, University of West London
- Eisosa Abdullahi, Solution Engineer, Salesforce – Degree Apprentice of the Year 2022
- Samantha Hillman, Deputy Principal, Exeter College.
- Sarah Prowse, Chief Executive Officer, UA92
- Vanessa Wilson, Chief Executive, University Alliance
- Professor Richard Follett, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Global Engagement) at the University of Exeter