Series 4 Episode 1 – Supporting care experienced and estranged students at St Andrews

Lauren Sykes
Thursday 9 November 2023

Student Lucy Reynolds, staff member Rebecca Munro and St Andrews alum Chris Law MP share their higher education access stories with Professor Stephen Gethins.

In this podcast, the first in a series of conversations about the importance of widening access and understanding more about the barriers some people face in accessing education, including Higher Education, Scotland’s Future Series looks at some of the challenges faced by students from a care-experienced background.

Professor Stephen Gethins speaks to third year student Lucy Reynolds about her time at St Andrews and the reasons why she set up a network for care-experienced and estranged students; Rebecca Munro from the Admissions team, who is using her own experience of the care system, leaving school with few qualifications and becoming homeless, in her work with the Widening Access team; and St Andrews alum Dundee West MP Chris Law who spent much of his childhood in care after his family situation broke down. As the only Member of Parliament from a care experienced background, Chris has campaigned for greater support for those who have grown up in care and, along with Rebecca, is involved in the Who Cares? Scotland organisation.

During the conversation we hear more about the important role university can play not only in providing an education and qualifications but also in providing, for some, vital stability and support.

The guests also share some startling statistics on the life chances of young people who have been through the care system and the impact this has on their self-confidence and how they view themselves in society.

Listen to the podcast on Spotify.

Watch a video version on YouTube.