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School children graduate from Sheffield Children's University

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School children across the city have been celebrating reaching two million hours of extra-curricular activities at the Children's University (CU) awards hosted by Sheffield Hallam University.

Last night, 190 children received awards for participating in out-of-school activities as part of a scheme led by the CU that has clocked up a total of two million hours of activity since it launched in 2005. Five ceremonies are being hosted at Sheffield Hallam, where the children and their families get to celebrate their achievements with a graduation ceremony experience.

Sheffield Children's University (CU) is part of a national initiative that works with organisations like Sheffield Hallam to encourage and celebrate participation in extra-curricular activities by providing exciting opportunities for learning beyond the classroom.

As well as hosting this year's award ceremonies, Sheffield Hallam runs interactive events for families throughout the year, such as Harry Potter Week in the Winter Gardens, the SHU Family Fun Day and the summer treasure hunt, where children can collect credits by taking part.  

Children receive a bronze award, for 30 hours of activity engagement, silver for 65 hours and gold for 100+ hours. 

National research shows a clear link between participation in out of school activities and academic progress due to increased self-esteem and confidence. This is supported by research by the CU that shows children and young people that participate in out of school CU activities, achieve better and exceed their estimated results. 

Sheffield Hallam University's Vice-Chancellor, Professor Chris Husbands attended last night's ceremony, where he congratulated the youngsters on their achievements.  He said: “I have always been a great admirer of the Children’s University It's great to see so many young people challenging themselves outside the classroom. Extra-curricular activities are extremely rewarding for young people and I am delighted to be able to celebrate the achievements of these enthusiastic individuals." 


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Jenny Lawton-Hunt is the Widening Participation and Outreach Coordinator for Sheffield Hallam who helped to organise the awards ceremony. She said:

Inviting the young people in to Sheffield Hallam to receive their awards gives them an opportunity to enjoy the University with their families and experience the excitement of a graduation – hopefully the first of many! You can’t help but be inspired by the achievements of these young people and we love working with Sheffield Children’s University to support them; the Children’s University Awards are some of my favourite events of the year!

For press information: Call Sheffield Hallam University press office on 0114 225 2811 or email