What our students think of The Duke of Edinburgh's Award Programme

Alex and Elise give their views about The Duke of Edinburgh's Award (DofE) Programme

Why do you think DofE is important?

Alex: DofE allows teenagers to experience exciting and unusual opportunities, that help develop their confidence, abilities and worldly experiences.

Elise: DofE encourages you to do activities that you wouldn’t normally do inside school or might have access to in school. Also it helps you find new activities to take up.

Which skills have you developed?

Alex: My residential trip was an opportunity to focus on a topic I don’t have any knowledge about; focusing on History meant that I learnt new and interesting information in a different environment. I learnt the importance of teamwork and resilience from all areas of my DofE.

Elise: I would have never considered taking part in the Young Enterprise Programme. From this I learnt the complexities of running a business and the processes behind it.

How have you juggled DofE with your academic study?

Alex: DofE did not impact my academic study, it fitted well with my weekly routines without reducing my free time.

Elise: I found I was already doing some activities so it was easy to fit any extra things into my schedule.

What has your favourite experience been?

Alex: The expedition, including all preparation, was so much fun, and a massive learning experience.

Elise: My favourite experience was the gold canoeing expedition. One of the funniest moments was slipping down a muddy bank trying to get back into the boat and capsizing on the rapids.

How has DofE helped support your university applications?

Alex: I ended up not including DofE in my personal statement as I had other details that were more applicable to my specific degree, however I still logged it as an achievement and for others it was a relevant and core part of their statement.

Elise: It helped enhance my personal statement including skills I had gained from the activities I’d completed.

What advice would you give to other Abbey girls considering whether to embark on DofE?

Alex: It gives you massive personal satisfaction to complete all areas of DofE, knowing that you have the strength, determination and resilience to keep going through any difficult situations whilst still having fun.

Elise: It’s not as tough as it might seem and a lot more activities count towards it than you may think. It’s enjoyable and worthwhile completing.