Gael's Story

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Gael joined ESMS in 2014 from a school in Fife following the footsteps of her sister, Heather.

I still remember my very first day at Mary Erskine when I saw girls of all ages proud to be in their uniform, keen to be involved and, more importantly, happy to be at School. Joining at the start of third year meant that I was fully able to commit myself to many extra-curricular activities, something which I noticed girls at the school took pride in being part of. They also demonstrated an obvious competitive spirit, something my previous school seemed to lack. The aim to do well was evident both in and out of the classroom and drove me to push myself to obtain good grades and to develop lots of other skills. As Deputy Head Girl of the school and head of the Cadet Regiment I was able to become a true part of the school, someone who can say they are more than just a student.

I was delighted to learn in the summer of 2018 that I had achieved really good results in my Advanced Higher exams which enabled me to confirm my acceptance of an offer from Loughborough University where I have completed the first year of my degree. This first year was incredibly busy, exciting and also fun-filled. I feel lucky to be able to study Product Design Engineering and I have found it to be a real challenge but I've still had the time to enjoy myself. 

Both sets of exams have gone well albeit I had a concussion, acquired at rugby training, during the first set of exams in January. I am hoping that I will achieve a first which will set me up nicely when looking for somewhere to spend my placement year in industry from summer 2020 until summer 2021. I am still considering whether or not to go abroad for the placement.   

Loughborough University is good for making friends and I’ve managed to make a really nice group of friends who all share similar interests to me. We all like to have fun by going climbing together, or cooking or just doing strange things together, like slacklining - a balancing exercise!

One of the perks of Loughborough is that it’s also the Olympic training centre so most students like to have fun by playing sport, which is great for me! A lot of the time, to help me from becoming stressed with my coursework, I try to go to the gym with some of my friends. I played rugby for the first time, playing as a winger for a whole season, and our team even won the league we were in!

I’ve also joined the Loughborough Design Society and met plenty of like-minded people. I was voted in as the Vice Chair for next year and I am incredibly excited as I’ll be reaching out and working with numerous companies to help myself and other students find things that they are interested in. I’m getting to set up workshops and trips for our society members and it should be so much fun getting to learn new skills and play around with developing technology.  

My time at Mary Erskine encouraged me to do many things, including to challenge myself, and it’s safe to say that University is continuing to do this. So far, my experience has been incredible and I feel like I have really managed to find a university which suits me and will allow me to develop my interests and skills further.

Gael and her sister Heather both benefited from transformative bursary support at ESMS and are both very grateful for the opportunities they have been given.  They have said

We would both like to thank every single donor to Access to Excellence for your kindness and your generosity.  Although we will never meet you, we will never forget what you have done for us.  Please continue to support Access to Excellence as generously as you can in the certain knowledge that every donation will help to change the lives of other girls and boys for many years to come.

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