Jessica White has achieved her PGCE in Secondary Religious Education
Jesscia originally came to Worcester from Nottingham to study Sociology in 2016, before progressing to train as a teacher at the University with a Secondary PGCE in Religious Education.
When the pandemic turned everybody’s world upside down, Jessica got to work. She developed her own programme of training to ensure that she could still meet the required teaching standards despite her final placement having to end early when the schools closed. She also worked hard to support her fellow students, sharing her learning, and lifting spirits with her trademark positive attitude.
“This year has been a whirlwind and it feels like a huge relief to finally be graduating,” Jessica said. “The way our PGCE ended was very anti-climactic, so it is lovely to be able to have the opportunity to celebrate and mark the end of all of our hard work.”
“My second PGCE placement got cut short when we went into lockdown and we moved straight to online learning,” she added. “We had weekly Teams calls with the cohort of RE trainees where we focussed on developing our teaching practice virtually. During the first lockdown I also had several virtual interviews for teaching jobs, which were an experience in themselves. It was very bizarre to have never been able to see a school in person yet be interviewing for a job.”
One of these virtual interviews led to Jessica securing her first teaching role at a school in Manchester.
“I love living in Manchester,” she said. “The people, the lifestyle, the pace of life is something completely different to what I became used to in Worcester, but I feel I am thriving under the circumstances.
“The pupils are vibrant and diverse and offer me challenges every day which strengthen my teacher practice. I have never been so happy and content.”
“I would like to say a massive thank you to everyone I encountered during my four years at the University of Worcester,” Jessica added, “particularly the life-long friends I have made over the years and the amazing lecturers who imparted much wisdom whilst offering their support and always encouraging me to reach my full potential.”
“I moved to Worcester in 2016 as an 18-year-old to study Sociology. It was my first time moving away from home, in a new city, with new people, but I would not have changed it for the world. From my first visit at an Open Day, I knew Worcester was where I wanted to go to University. The city is so quaint and beautiful, and the Campus felt so welcoming and supportive. My fondest memories are those shared with new friends. I built lasting relationships with many people on both courses and still value those friendships today.”
From intrepid Fresher to qualified teacher with a new job in an exciting city, Jessica has achieved a lot in the last few years, and all despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.