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Issued:23/11/18

Young students were given a taste of life at university when they attended a graduation event.

The students are all members of Sheffield's Children's University (CU), which tracks and rewards participation in out of hours extra curricular activities to young people and is run by Sheffield City Council.

A group of the CU's top students - who were all presented with Gold Fellowship Awards for completing 1,000 hours of activities or more - were invited to take part in the event organised by Sheffield Hallam University at Sheffield City Hall.

They were robed up and their families watched as they were presented with their awards by Heather Wain, head of academic development at the Institute of Education at Sheffield Hallam, on stage in a university-style graduation ceremony.

Afterwards they went down to tour the gowning area and were given a talk by staff from Ede & Ravenscroft - one of the oldest tailoring firms in the world, which provides ceremonial robes for civic occasions including royal coronations and graduation ceremonies at universities all over the UK.

The children tried on caps and gowns and even had their own professional graduation photos taken.

Katie Hamshaw, Children's University project manager at South Yorkshire Futures - Sheffield Hallam's social mobility partnership, said: "It’s the first time we have been able to offer an opportunity like this in partnership with the university, and we had some fantastic feedback from families."

Sheffield Hallam University is the most prominent university in the UK for driving improvements in education and championing social mobility.

As a key regional institution, the University has committed to improving education across South Yorkshire through its ground-breaking social mobility partnership: South Yorkshire Futures.

The flagship project, backed by the Department for Education, aims to improve attainment and raise aspiration for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds across all age groups, whilst developing a dedicated workforce to support them.

For press information: Contact Polly Mosley in the Sheffield Hallam University press office on 0114 225 3224 or email p.mosley@shu.ac.uk