Year 8 activities

Our work aims to support the development of aspirations and educational attainment amongst students from under-represented and disadvantaged groups. To participate in our activities, students should be in state schools/colleges and meet one or more of our targeting and eligibility criteria.

We are currently offering a range of On-Campus, In-School and Virtual activity. Keep an eye out for our annual Year 8 Week event in the spring term too!

Targeting and eligibility criteria

Surrey Stars

Surrey Stars is an in-school and extra-curricular programme for your free school meal students. Take part in a number of workshops and activity days that embed our Aspirations Programme within your school timetable.

Surrey Stars is an embedded programme of aspirations workshops and extra-curricular events from the University of Surrey. Your students can take part in a selection on in-school activity in addition to being invited to attend exclusive summer holiday programmes.

Surrey Stars is available to students eligible for free schools meals in Years 7, 8 and 9. All students participating on the programme will receive a welcome pack in addition to invitation to extra-curricular activities.

To register for Surrey Stars, nominating teachers can contact for further information.

Aspirations Programme

Our Aspirations Programme offers teachers to build your own workshop that is tailored for your class' engagement and development. There are five themes, from which you can select multiple 30-minute topics that best suit your aims. 

The five themes include;

  • Higher Education
  • Education Pathways
  • Careers and Employability 
  • Developing Skills
  • Wellbeing

These one or two hour sessions are perfect for off-curriculum or drop-down days. These sessions can also be delivered virtually through Google Classrooms, Zoom or Microsoft Teams. Recommended packages for your Year Group are also available. 

Our Y8 Programme is recommended for your year group, consisting of 3 days to give your students increased coverage of subject tasters and aspirations workshops. Dates are flexible across the academic year with all bookings including:

  • 2 days on campus*
  • 1 day in school
  • Subject Tasters
  • University Life
  • Clubs and Societies
  • Mindfulness
  • How to Choose Your Options
  • Graduation

*Subject to availability. Early bookings are encouraged.

To request our Aspirations Programme please contact us at


The Higher Education sessions we can deliver include;

  • Higher Education myth-busting
  • Introduction to university
  • Design a university
  • Life at university
  • Student finance
  • Accommodation
  • Clubs and Societies
  • Support at university
  • Student life


Education Pathway sessions we can deliver include;

  • Post 16 routes
  • Post 18 routes
  • Choosing your options
  • Goal mapping
  • Apprenticeships
  • How to make decisions
  • Next steps after school


Careers and Employability sessions we can deliver include;

  • Careers routes and your career pathway
  • Understand Labour Market Information
  • Explore Careers - An introduction to
    • Health and Medicine
    • STEM
    • Creative Industries
    • Digital
  • Interview skills
  • Presenting yourself
  • Preparing for work experience


Developing Skills sessions we can deliver include;

  • Revision
  • Preparing for exams
  • Budgeting
  • Time management
  • Being your own ambassador


Wellbeing sessions we can deliver include;

  • Dealing with exam stress
  • Resilience and wellbeing
  • Mindfulness


In-School Subject Workshops

Our in-school subject workshops offer your class a hands-on, curriculum linked one hour session. Your students will hear from our Staff as well as University of Surrey Student Ambassadors.

Our in-school activity has been designed to be delivered safely within your classroom. We will discuss arrangements with you following your booking request to ensure that our sessions complement your timetable and environment. 

To request any of our in-school subject activities please contact

Session Outline | Blending engineering with business, students design, build and test various structures in a bid to win a construction contract. Acting as an interactive introduction, this workshop appeals to students who enjoy problem solving and competition.

Key Outcomes | Students will understand what an engineer does and how you can become one, as well as consider how to use resources efficiently.  

Gatsby Benchmarks | Meets benchmarks 4 and 7 

How to Book | To request this in-school activity complete the online booking form here

Session Outline | In this workshop, students will learn about politics by creating a brand-new political party with their own manifesto, policies and values. Students will have the power put into their hands, making tough decisions for the whole of society as if they were the elected Government!

Key Outcomes | Students will learn how important decisions are made by political parties and individuals and develop their decision-making skills.

Gatsby Benchmarks | Meets benchmarks 4 and 7

How to Book | To request this in-school activity complete the online booking form here

Session Outline | In this workshop, students will learn about animal welfare and The Five Freedoms. Students will design a new enclosure at a zoo, considering enrichment for the animals as well as how information about the animals and conservation projects will be displayed to visitors. There may also be a chance to speak with Veterinary Medicine Student Ambassadors virtually to talk about their course and careers in Veterinary Science.

Key Outcomes | Students will learn about animal welfare and how the principles are applied in real life situations, such as the designing of a new zoo enclosure. Students will also consider alternative careers relating to animals.

Gatsby Benchmarks | Meets benchmarks 4 and 7

How to Book | To request this in-school activity complete the online booking form here

Excellent day. Really enjoyed it. Thanks so much.