Former Student Amy Presents to A-Level French Class

Former student, Amy Broadfoot, from Woodley, returned to visit A-Level French students. Amy is studying Law with French Law LLB at the University of Birmingham and is currently living in France for the first time for her year abroad in Strasbourg.

Amy delivered a delightful and engaging presentation covering the jump from GCSE to A Level French, the battle of studying through Covid-19, choosing her university course, what it’s like studying abroad and comparing British and French university life.

Amy said The Henley College gave her an abundance of confidence and really transformed her as a person. She used to be nervous about speaking in class but recalls recently conversing with a French man on a train and he was shocked to learn she was English! She said it's these compliments that really help and give you a boost of confidence.

Already in her first month of living abroad, Amy has gained loads of confidence in her French ability, tasted the best coffee ever, visited the Council of Europe, travelled to surrounding villages, watched her local club's football matches and taken trips to Germany and Amsterdam.  

In the future, Amy hopes to qualify as a solicitor at a UK firm and then work in-house as a lawyer all over the world! 

Student Joshua Priest, who is currently studying Law, History and French and would like to go on to do an international law degree in Paris said “It was great to see how a past student went about studying both French and Law at university. It was interesting to find out more about the structure of university and how the lectures work for these courses. She was very informative about how she wrote her personal statement, about her mandatory study year abroad and was encouraging when speaking about how even though she has gone all the way to university studying French she still had anxiety around speaking, but the year in France helped her confidence to excel. Amy gave a great insight into International Law at university level and aided me in perhaps choosing a future orientation for myself and my classmates.”

Student Clara said "Amy was lovely and her story was very interesting because I am applying for a Law course. It really helped me consider other options alongside a straight law degree as well as the idea of a year abroad. I found her presentation very helpful, and I got the chance to ask her some questions of which she answered them all!”

French teacher Stephanie Dujardin-Viney commented It's always a pleasure to have former students coming back to college and see how well they are doing after completing their AL course here. Even more so for Amy who, like other students in her year, had Covid impact her A level course and exams a few years ago. This didn't stop her from getting a place at her top choice university in Birmingham, studying Law with French. Her presentation for my current AL French students (both AS and AL) was highly informative and useful, not only because she talked about her experience studying AL French at college and the challenges she initially faced, but also the process of applying to university and the opportunities available to study French alongside other subjects. She is currently on her year abroad in Strasbourg and it seems to be a fantastic experience for her so far!" 

We asked Amy some questions about her time at The Henley College.

When did you come to The Henley College, what did you study here, and how did you get on?

I attended The Henley College (2018-2020) and studied French (A), Spanish (A) and Psychology (A*) A level and AS Maths (A).

What was your first impression of The Henley College?

When I first looked around the college, I was so surprised at how friendly all the staff and students were. It was way bigger than my secondary school’s Sixth Form and offered way more subjects than anywhere I’d seen.

Why did you choose to come here? What helped make up your mind?

I chose The Henley College because it allowed me to take the combination of subjects that I wanted to and was a perfect stepping stone between secondary school and Uni. The teachers meet you at 16 and treat you far more grown up than in a Sixth Form where most teachers meet you in Year 7 and think of you as the person you were at 11 years old. I also liked the fact my languages teachers were native speakers, and that The Henley College offered a languages assistant where I got 1-1 practice with a native speaker as part of my A Level. 

What is your best memory of your time at The Henley College and why?

The best memory I have of my time at The Henley College is when my Spanish class ran a Come Dine With Me-style competition, where all the students cooked a traditional Spanish dish and we all got to taste them. It was particularly great as we had loads of native Spanish students who were able to make some really yummy authentic dishes.

Did you always want to do what you are doing now?

I always was interested in studying Law but at college I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do at Uni. All I knew was that I wanted to continue studying my languages and I spent loads of time with my Tutor trying to find a course that suited me!

What has influenced your decisions about the subjects you have studied and the career path you have chosen?

Having such supportive teachers in all my subjects gave me the confidence to choose whatever I wanted to. Learning about not just France/Spain but all the countries where these languages are spoken too made me curious as to the impact and opportunities I could have with these skills I gained at college and encouraged me to study Law on an international level which is why I am studying in Strasbourg - a hub for European law.

What do you think The Henley College did for you – aside from the qualifications you gained?

I made friends for life and really started to believe I could do anything that I put my mind to. Before college, I was an anxious person who always doubted my ability and I left as someone who was optimistic about the future and believed truly in my abilities.

If you had one piece of advice for a 15–16-year-old thinking about their future, what would it be?  

My advice for any 15–16-year-old thinking about their future would be to take a chance! Even if you think that moving to a new college will be difficult and scary, you have to do what makes you happy! Try new things and don’t worry about being bad or not getting things straight away - we all start somewhere! 

Is there anything else you would like to add?

I just want to thank all of my teachers from college - Ana, Stephanie, Val, Jon and Jay. Without all the support I received from day one of my time at The Henley College, I wouldn’t be the person I am, doing what I love!

Thank you so much to Amy for visiting and also spending time with Stephanie at our November Information Evening. We look forward to hearing how you progress further on down the line!

If you aspire to big, beautiful things in life, like Amy, then apply to The Henley College now by clicking >>here<<.

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