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Step Up Programme

The Step Up programme is a free, two-year, academic programme for college and sixth form students who have experienced educational disadvantage or disruption.

The programme offers the fantastic opportunity to experience university life through academic masterclasses and a university summer festival.

The programme aims to equip students with the right skills and knowledge to successfully negotiate the application process and thrive at university.

Highlights of the scheme

  • Specially designed academic short courses which prepare students for studying in a university environment.
  • Exclusive invitations to tailored events, such as open day briefings and personal statement workshops.
  • Exclusive access to a Year 12 residential summer festival.
  • An academic tutor allocated to students.
  • Opportunities to meet current university students who were previously part of the programme.
  • A means-tested bursary for students who go on to study at Cardiff University (subject to terms and conditions).

Eligibility criteria

In order to become a member of the programme, students must identify with one of the following groups:

  • live in an area of socio-economic deprivation (Communities First, Low Participation Neighbourhoods or eligible for Free School Meals)
  • first in family to attend higher education
  • asylum seeker
  • young people with Autism Spectrum Conditions
  • estranged students
  • experience of being in care
  • young people with caring responsibilities

In addition to supporting the groups listed above, we are committed to supporting all students who have experienced educational disadvantage or disruption. Please contact us to discuss any specific circumstances.

Contact us

Please email our Widening Participation team to find out more about the Step Up programme:

Widening participation and outreach team