“Good evening, my name’s Emily Middleton and I’m a Consultant at the Boston Consulting Group.

Before BCG, I studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford.I signed up to be a tutor with The Access Project around three years ago, soon after I started at BCG. I’d always been passionate about access to education, and had worked and volunteered for children’s charities whilst at university. When I started work in consulting, I wanted to find a way I could continue those interests, and most importantly to make a meaningful impact.

I looked at different volunteering opportunities, but BCG’s tutoring program with The Access Project really stood out to me for three reasons:

1) The explicit focus on academic tutoring as a way to raise grades; rather than general mentoring 

2) Selection of students by their motivation and commitment rather than ability

3) The system of students travelling tot tutors’ workplaces, making it much more do-able to fit a regular commitment into an often hectic work schedule

I’ve tutored a couple of students, but one I’d like to talk about tonight is Zac. I spent over 6 months tutoring Zac in AS-level Economics, over 2013-14. He aspired to study the subject at university, but was finding it difficult to get the grades.

We spent the bulk of our time on exam technique, and the concepts he found most difficult, but also discussed current affairs, economics in the news, and even philosophy, which was an interest of Zak’s but not an A-level his school offered.

We also talked a lot about careers – I probably have to claim some responsibility that management consultancy became Zak’s number 1 choice…

Over the weeks and months, as well as seeing Zak’s economics essays improve, I saw him become more and more articulate in expressing his point of view and become quicker at gathering his thoughts.

Almost two years on, Zak got in touch with me recently to say he’s now studying Economics and Business at Birkbeck university, that it’s going really well, and he’s getting good grades.

Zak’s message said, “During a management lecture, BCG was mentioned and I remembered how much I benefited from the economics tutorials! I’d like to thank you again for all the hard work and commitment you’ve put in to help me get better grades back then, allowing me to get to this stage”

This was a great message to receive, and reinforces how glad I am to tutor with The Access Project. It’s incredibly refreshing to spend an hour a week with a motivated student, discussing topics far removed from my day-to-day work.

But most importantly, I see the impact that tutoring and The Access Project on the student, and from my point of view, that’s a fantastic return for an hour or two of my time every week.”