Helping students to achieve their dreams

Student building a model house

Students from St Joseph’s CBS Secondary, Fairview Dublin 3, exploring the concepts of engineering during a Junior Cycle Workshop with TUDublin.

basis.point’s ambition is to give every child in Ireland equal access to a brighter future by funding evidence-based educational programmes that tackle complex issues arising as children journey through their educational lifecycle to reach their life goals. They offer hope to children who wouldn’t normally have access to support structures that allow them to reach their potential.

The Junior Cycle Workshop Programme offered by basis.point aims to highlight higher education as a realistic and achievable goal for students from schools in disadvantaged areas. University campus visits allow them to fully visualise a future in education.

Chris and Daniel* are two 14-year-old students at an inner city Dublin school. They live in an area of historic disadvantage with very few role models heading on to third level education. There is little extra cash to spend on education. Lack of confidence and a hesitation to deviate from known paths, coupled with anxiety of the unknown, are constant barriers to overcome when it comes to furthering their education.

Exploring the concepts of wind energy

Last year, they were offered the chance to participate in the basis.point Junior Cycle Workshop Programme and were inspired by what they saw and experienced.

Contrary to their expectations they felt truly accepted within an academic environment that was welcoming, inclusive and non-judgmental.

Instilled with newfound confidence and resilience, both Chris and Daniel are eager to maintain their academic achievement and aspire to go on to third level education.

Explaining his changed perceptions, Daniel* said he had previously thought that college would be “just hard work, constant learning and just really tough.”

Experiencing a “lightbulb” moment while attending the campus workshop, he realized

It’s more like you paving your own path into the future, doing what you want to do in your own life. They actually help you there to achieve your dreams.

According to school guidance teachers, the workshops are pivotal in evoking curiosity in exploring third level options. It is all about breaking down barriers and demystifying third level education. An actual physical bridge is been forged between the school campus and Grangegorman.

Once this curiosity has been ignited, it takes courage, confidence and belief to follow through. These kids deserve to be applauded for taking the first steps into territories unknown.

*names have been changed for the purpose of this piece

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