Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Chemistry outreach


Inspiring a passion for science and a feeling of self-worth

Some of our regular donors might recognise Nick Barker from some of our recent magazines and emails.

Nick runs the Chemistry Schools Outreach Programme at Warwick which reaches out to young people across the Midlands and beyond.

Last year he welcomed over 1,200 young people to our labs, and gave lectures to 7,500 people. He says:

I think that we all need someone to really believe in us before we can believe in ourselves. Some people don't get the encouragement they need early on, and our programme helps young people to experience something that is new, inspiring and informative.

I'm proud to work with people from all backgrounds, and to help inspire both an passion for science and also a feeling of self-worth. People leave our labs proud of themselves and what they can do, and that's crucial.

A special new project thanks to a donation

An anonymous donor has made a new project possible at Warwick, giving £5,000 to the Chemistry Schools Outreach Programme. Their gift will pay an experienced graduate to spend 3-6 months at the end of their PhD working with a specially selected group of young people. Nick says:

Lab visitor and Nick Barker I'm extremely grateful to the donor for their support, and I'm looking forward to meeting them to tell them exactly how their money will make an impact!

Our wider outreach work is vital and I never cease to be amazed at what people can do when they begin to believe in themselves. However this donation will help us start offering more targeted support too.

Everything we do here depends on our brilliant volunteers who help out across the whole year as tutors, guiding children in their work during laboratory visits, and this gift will fund a PhD student to spend some time after their degree working with and mentoring a select group of students.

That graduate will be challenged to use chemistry as a vehicle to present these young people with a sense of their own potential and show them how to prepare themselves for a life of academic excellence and a career beyond higher education.

For some academically talented young people, it is simply not possible to obtain high grades at A-level for reasons that are beyond their direct control. This programme will help support them to gain the grades and receive the advice they need to access higher education - developing their talents, allowing them to lead more comfortable and rewarding lives, and to make greater contributions to society.

It's just a wonderful gift and we would love to receive more like it. Thank you.

Thank you to the anonymous donor who's funded this project, and to each and every person who contributes to outreach work at Warwick.