Laura Walker is a sixth-year student at Robert Gordon’s College. Having moved to Robert Gordon’s in her second year of high school, she found herself challenged in the best of ways at her new school.
Here, Laura talks to us about why an independent school has been the right choice for her. Keep reading to find out how Robert Gordon’s College has benefitted her development and allowed her to flourish.
“As my time at school comes to an end, I can confidently say that attending an independent school has been the highlight of my educational career.
“Initially, I found my transition challenging, arriving during S2. I came from a small state school of roughly 500 pupils and suddenly found myself stretched and challenged in every way. Subjects that I had merely breezed through previously now demanded time and effort that I wasn’t used to giving them. However, before long I found myself developing the skills to deal with this and even enjoying the challenges I was presented with.
“I joined the school shy and low in self-esteem, but with the encouragement of teachers I became someone who was keen to get involved. Previously I felt uncomfortable even raising my hand in class, but a few months in I was performing in shows and joining choirs, even taking part in public speaking competitions.
“I vividly remember being surprised at the extent of resources on offer at Robert Gordon’s College. Everything from unscratched safety glasses in the science department to iPads rolled out across the school really enhanced not only our ability to learn, but the fun we had whilst doing it.
“One of the most unique opportunities Robert Gordon’s College has given me was a place at the Global Alliance for Innovative Learning convention in Boston. This particular trip stands out as I had the opportunity to learn about ethical leadership alongside other teenagers from China, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, USA and India. This was an amazing experience that has hugely shaped who I am, instilling in me confidence, leadership skills and a belief in myself.
“However, the most impactful part of my time at an independent school has undoubtedly been the development of a love and an appreciation of learning. From the moment I joined my school, each and every teacher has been encouraging and determined to help me achieve the very best result possible. In my experience, the English department have gone out of their way to nurture a budding love for the subject. Because of this, my devotion to English grew, so that now I am looking forward to studying the subject at university next year. This is also seen across subjects that I struggled in, namely science and maths, where my teachers have been able to give me one-to-one time which pushed me past my insecurity in these subjects, allowing me to attain A grades.
“At the end of my four years at Robert Gordon’s College, I am looking back with an appreciation of exactly how much time and energy has been put into my education. This wasn’t out of the ordinary - it was normal to receive the extensive resources I had access to, as they are so abundant around the school. But in hindsight, this is truly extraordinary and offered me opportunities that not many people get to receive. This has allowed me to develop independence, motivation and a good work ethic, preparing me as much as possible for life beyond school.”