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Published 14th Jul 2011

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Teesside University will be hosting its own mini-Glastonbury next week. Only this event won’t be mired in mud or headlined by Beyonce. For TFEST 2011, from 18-20 July, is a higher education summer school to inspire local teenagers to consider further and higher education.

This year’s event has a festival theme, with 120 Year 10 (aged 14-15) pupils from across the Tees Valley and Durham experiencing the variety of University life for three days, including two nights as guests in halls of residence. The inspirational event is sponsored by Aim Higher, an initiative devised by the previous Labour government to increase participation in higher education by under-represented groups.

The week will start when the pupils visit a specially placed festival tent in the University’s Students’ Union. Activities will include flag making, circus tasks and races to assemble tents. Jordan Rochester, a Teesside University graduate, will give an inspirational talk to the teen festival goers in poetry and rap form. On Tuesday 19 July they will also visit Hartlepool Marina.

The pupils will combine their festival activities with academic sessions which include:

  • Planning an event with direction from a University events management lecturer
  • Creating an animated character based on a favourite song or piece of music
  • Producing a TV programme from the University’s hi-tech Athena studios
  • Exploring the role of an operating department practitioner in a clinical setting
  • Study skills and planning for careers.

Appropriately, the three days will end with a party and a performance by local band ‘Last Anthems.’

Amy Thompson, Summer School Co-ordinator, said: “We chose the festival theme as it gives the students something they can identify with during the summer festival season. It’s a fun way to offer inspirational learning and team building activities and we’re looking forward to welcoming the festival goers, minus the mud of course!”

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