My name is Calum Haggett, I am 18 years old and grew up in Tonyrefail at the edge of the Rhondda Valleys. As a result of having achieved 12 GCSE’s at Tonyrefail School, I made the decision to leave school and attend Coleg y Cymoedd. This decision was made after recognising the range of flexibility that was offered between the A Level Programme alongside the opportunities provided by the Rugby Academy.
I am proud to have represented the college in the 2014 Welsh Colleges Championship at the Millennium Stadium last April. I also progressed onto playing for the Cardiff Blues u18’s and the Wales U18’s; with whom I travelled to Poland and South Africa on international tours. It proves that making the choice to move to Coleg y Cymoedd in order to achieve academic and athletic balance has paid off.
I am aware of the huge risk that I took leaving the school that granted me great success at GCSE level to attend a newly formed college. I can honestly say that making the move to Coleg y Cymoedd in 2013 was one of the best choices that I have ever made. The flexibility of learning provided by the college is ideal for learners who prefer a more independent approach to education.
I am studying Maths, Physics and Biology alongside the Welsh Baccalaureate. I believe that the standard of teaching across the board is unparalleled, with the majority of my teachers having undergone professional careers in areas concerning scientific research and engineering. I feel that they have been able to translate the sometimes mundane subject theory into a more interesting and relevant manner, by applying it to real life situations.
Choosing these courses has allowed me to engage in a wide range of A Levels, thus equipping me with desirable knowledge and skills. I was apprehensive about my career path, but I knew that my future lied in a profession directed in science or maths. After completing my A Levels, I am planning to go onto Higher Education. I have made the decision to study Biomedical Sciences purely on my newly found passion for all things involving the human anatomy. I currently hold an offer (grades pending) from the University of Oxford and my hope is to go there next year. My respective courses at Coleg y Cymoedd provide me with not only the academic backing and preparation for my exams, but I also recognise that the pastoral support that I receive ensures that my time at the college runs as smoothly as possible.
Alongside my academic commitments, the college have been incredibly supportive concerning my current rugby ambitions and have helped me to find a balance between the two. They have made allowances for when my sometimes rigorous schedule has required me to attend a Wales u18’s training sessions and have been flexible with adapting my timetable to ensure that I submit the required course work.
Studying has now become a huge part of my life. It gives me confidence in my understanding of how certain biological processes work, and increases my curiosity of why things happen the way they do and what specific physical laws allows this to happen. Studying is not only an essential part of my future career aspirations, but also a life ambition to succeed. I strive to become a scientific researcher, attempting to combat specific diseases causing the human race problems in the modern day. In life, I feel there’s a constant urge within me to push on and get good A Levels and eventually achieve a good degree. It is a significant thing for me to complete these qualifications, as I would be the first in my family to complete A Levels let alone study a degree at a university as prestigious as Oxford.
I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Coleg y Cymoedd and would honestly recommend both the college and the courses that I have studied to anyone.
Your tutor Corrine Stephens said:
Calum has proved to be an asset to Coleg y Cymoedd over the past two years. He is a pleasant and well- liked student who has formed positive relationships with not only his peers but also members of staff. His mature approach to life has allowed him to demonstrate great tenacity and ambition in all aspects of his education and Rugby career.
Between his conditional offer to study Biomedical Science at Oxford and his achievement on the Rugby pitch, Calum has proven that the divide between sport and academia can be bridged.
Calum is a role model for all students who believe that with hard work you can achieve your dreams and his humble attitude regarding his abilities is only exceeded by his positive determination.
It has been an absolute pleasure being Calum’s personal tutor during his time in the A Level programme. I know that I represent everyone at Coleg y Cymoedd in wishing Calum the very best of luck with all of his future endeavours.