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Tara’s Story

Name: Tara

Home town: Harrogate, North Yorkshire

Career aspiration: Senior Civil Servant

I am a mixed-race student living in the poor part of a wealthy town in the north of England. Most schemes which encourage students to aim higher target other schools in the area, due to the below-average performance of mine.

My father didn’t complete university and works as an actor. Whilst my mother pursues her goals, this often proves fruitless. I was unable to take the few career opportunities that arose for me, due to the lack of funds to cover any costs incurred, and I devoted my energies to school work in the hope that, at least after university, I could secure a good job.

I was able to undertake work experience in the office of the local MP, thanks to its location in my town, and from this was invited to complete a work experience placement there. As a result, I decided I wanted to work in the political field, but had no idea how to follow such a path. Then I was introduced to the Social Mobility Foundation.

Applying was the best decision I could have made, having been able to undertake an internship with the Department for Education, go on open days, and attend a university residential I would not have otherwise known about.

The SMF has helped me in such a huge way, allowing me to explore the universities I eventually applied to, and I’ve made so many friends. Being part of the 2014 cohort has been amazing and I am currently preparing for a philosophy interview at the University of Cambridge.

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