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Welcome to #sthughsoutreach

St Hugh’s is committed to promoting educational equality.

Originally coming over from Moldova to the UK herself on an academic scholarship, Lena firmly believes that all pupils – regardless of background – should receive the support they need to achieve their academic goals and pursue further study at an advanced level.

Having spent over five years’ promoting access to Higher Education and spearheading numerous outreach projects, Lena is a trained motivational speaker who draws on her varied experiences to deliver engaging workshops to a range of audiences.

Lena holds degrees from Durham and Oxford, and has studied at universities in France and Italy, as well as working in art collection management, the heritage sector, communications, and both commercial and academic translation. She is currently completing a DPhil in eighteenth-century French literature and cultural production at the University of Oxford, during the course of which she has taught undergraduates in the department of Medieval and Modern Languages, and at the Ashmolean Museum.

~Lena Sorochina, Outreach & Partnerships Manager

As Outreach Officer at St. Hugh’s, Francesca works to support Lena in the provision of all the college’s access initiatives, including school visits, open days, and the teachers’ summer school. She is committed to broadening participation in higher education and working towards ensuring that every student is supported to reach their full academic potential.

Francesca comes from a STEM background, with a Master’s degree in mathematics and a DPhil in mathematical epidemiology from Merton College, Oxford. During her doctoral research, Francesca developed computational techniques for modelling the spread of infectious diseases and investigating the effects of different possible control interventions, with a particular focus on COVID-19. She loves interacting with students and finding exciting ways to engage them with their subject, and has taught various topics in mathematics, statistics, data analysis, and machine learning at the Universities of Oxford and Warwick.

~Dr Francesca Lovell-Read, Outreach Officer

Get in touch with us at

What we do

At St Hugh’s, we recognise that personal achievement and learning development start in school – but don’t stop there! This is why our outreach strategy is built around three main areas of focus: students, teachers and communities.

Our work with pupils encompasses a range of interactive skills workshops and targeted curriculum enrichment designed to ignite their curiosity and give them the tools to develop their learning capabilities, as well as demystify the Oxford experience.

These are delivered in tandem with our tailored resources to furnish teachers with the most accurate and current guidance regarding the admissions process and to enable them best to identify and support their talented students on the path to higher education, irrespective of background.

We know that teaching and learning are not confined to the classroom and appreciate the importance of communities in shaping young people’s education and aspirations. With this in mind, we partner with local groups beyond the school gates who are committed to the same vision.

And the work we do with these pupils continues further when they join us as undergraduates at St Hugh’s. With a dedicated Learning Development and Support Tutor on hand to provide 1:1 and group sessions, expert careers advice, and opportunities to get involved in sport, music or even to make a difference as outreach ambassadors, our aim is to keep equipping students to flourish whatever their areas of interest and plans for the future.

In accordance with the University of Oxford regionalisation scheme, the outreach work at St Hugh’s is primarily focused on schools in Kent, our link region, but we are happy to – and regularly do – work with state schools elsewhere.

For more information, get in touch with us at


How we do it

For students:

  • Oxbridge application workshops (personal statement writing, admissions tests preparation, interview practice)
  • Study skills workshops (arguments and academic confidence, time and task management, writing clearly and articulately, revision and exam preparation)
  • Student ambassador Q&A sessions and top tips in-person and online
  • Motivation and raising expectations seminars
  • Essay competitions

For teachers:

  • Information sessions in schools
  • 1:1 consultations
  • Teachers’ residential in the summer (knowledge-sharing, tailored workshops, opportunity to meet Oxford tutors, get to know the city)

For families and communities:

  • Talks for parents (demystifying the application process, supporting your children, financial guidance)
  • Working with local groups (supporting events and learning hubs)
  • Individual visits to St Hugh’s (you are always welcome to visit us, just drop us a line to let us know when you would like to come!)