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Is D of E really that important?

(31 Posts)
FiveHoursSleep Thu 12-Jan-17 09:54:02

DD is 15 ( Y10) and doing her bronze and she's not feeling the love. She's quite academic, has a good range of other EC activities ( 2 instruments, dog agility/training, netball, Guides Senior Section, horses) and does quite a lot of babysitting and music tuition for paid work.
So she's busy and D of E is stressing her out. She wants to give it up, but is it worth persevering with?
She's not 100% sure what she wants to do, but has been keen on paramedical type stuff lately so is unlikely to be looking at getting competitive re uni.
DH went to Cambridge and he'd like her to have the opportunity to go there, but I really can't see her being that interested.

2014newme Thu 12-Jan-17 09:57:54

Ditch it. Unis don't care unless it's somehow relevant e g if you were doing volunteer work relevant to your degree

raspberryrippleicecream Thu 12-Jan-17 19:22:41

Agree. DS1 did complete his Bronze, by basically doing stuff he was doing anyway, except for the expedition. I'm not sure if he even mentioned it on his uni application and had no problem with offers.

Manumission Thu 12-Jan-17 19:27:46

The D of E mania is completely out of hand.

It sounds like she has a LOT of extra curriculars keeping her busy already.

None of the young people I know who have been lucky with Oxbridge places in the last few years are stereotypical DoE, Grade 8 instrument, polyglots anyway so presenting as that particular "type" clearly isn't key.

raspberryrippleicecream Thu 12-Jan-17 19:28:55

Oh, and DD was told at a recent talk by Cambridge (DS1 heard similar) thatCambridge (and Oxford) is all about super-curricular, not extra- curricular, ie they want to see more about your passion for the subject you've applied to study!

Manumission Thu 12-Jan-17 19:28:59

Have you checked what paramedic courses look for?

GruochMacAlpin Thu 12-Jan-17 19:33:29

No one has ever been interested in my D of E at any point. A relative of mine got into Cambridge with no extracurricular activities (but a brain the size of a planet)

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Thu 12-Jan-17 19:33:44

No-one cares about DofE (especially bronze) unless it's the only out of school thing the applicant is doing. It sounds like she's doing plenty. Have a look at the university websites for the specific courses and see what they say.

FiveHoursSleep Thu 12-Jan-17 19:35:55

Thanks everyone re D of E. Typically she's come home perked up because they are doing First Aid next week and she loves that!

A paramedic science degree requires ' some experience of delivering care in a professional or voluntary capacity and a reference from a current or recent employer or educational institution.
They may be required to hold a full UK driving licence by the time they attend the interview stage.
Normally five GCSEs at grade C or above, including English language or literature, mathematics and a science (single or double) or equivalent, plus one of the following: 280 points from GCE/VCE A levels or BTEC National qualifications'

She'll be fine with the academic part as she would be predicted A/A* in old money- so we are assuming she will manage to get 5s in English, Maths and Science.
The driving licence may be more of an challenge but she has plans to volunteer in the care sector when she turns 16.

GrumpyOldBag Thu 12-Jan-17 19:38:18

DS never completed his bronze D of E.

It was a massive hassle organising the volunteering activitY (working in local charity shop) & he never got the paperwork done properly.

He's already had 2 Uni offers. I really don't think it would have made any difference either way.

Manumission Thu 12-Jan-17 19:38:24

Judging by both of these (on the job and uni routes) she might do well to put as much effort into acquiring driving skills as she can. Is she learning?

Manumission Thu 12-Jan-17 19:39:35

X post sorry and missed her age.

Maybe pre-driving would be a good idea at some point?

Monkeyface26 Thu 12-Jan-17 19:44:23

So many people routinely do bronze DofE that it doesn't help to mark one student/applicant out from another any more. Gold award still has some value but it takes a lot of time/money/fund-raising so unless student is very committed and enthusiastic, there will be something better they could do with their time.

TeenAndTween Thu 12-Jan-17 19:48:46

DofE Bronze was great for my DD as it took her out of her comfort zone and made her try new things. But she hadn't done guides / instrument / sports. For OPs DD I can't see the benefit.

user1484226561 Thu 12-Jan-17 19:52:58

DofE is valueable to some people , not others. Paramedical courses are exceptionally competative to get into, so she would be better off concentrating on extra curricular activities tht would help with this.

St John's? red cross? driving, definitely, other area to practice people skills, even retail, etc.

xyzandabc Thu 12-Jan-17 19:53:03

If she loves 1st aid and is interested in paramedical work. Joining your local St John Ambulance cadet division would probably give her better relevant experience than D of E.

CrotchetQuaverMinim Thu 12-Jan-17 19:58:58

Has she looked on The Student Room about paramedic degrees? I knew a teenager a couple of years ago who wanted to apply, had OK GCSEs, though wasn't sure about science A-levels - she sounded like she met the minimum requirements, but when she was reading The Student Room about what the people who got on the courses actually had, she decided it wasn't for her. A lot seemed to need a science A-level or more, quite competitive grades, and almost all of them had spent a serious amount of time volunteering with St John Ambulance and various other organisations, and had done a lot of training and work experience and so on. Quite a few had a gap year with relevant experience, or were mature students. It was a LOT more competitive to get on the course than she'd realised, and she wished she'd known that earlier to get more involved in some of that.

Witchend Thu 12-Jan-17 20:19:06

I think Dof E is important for the ones who don't do anything already.

Dd1 does all except the walking, so I when she said she didn't want to do I thought that was fine. She volunteers, does a sport, does a skill etc.
The school can't take everyone that applies either. They officially take them on a first come first served (gone within 5 minutes) place scheme. I have great suspicions that that look at all in in the first 10 minutes and choose those whom they think it would benefit ie those who don't do the things above anyway, as those are the people who seem to get it.

CrotchetQuaverMinim Thu 12-Jan-17 20:40:38

Also I think a lot of people just do D of E to 'tick the box', rather than for the purposes of challenging themselves, which is surely what it should be about. I work with a number of teenagers, many who do it as an almost automatic thing through their school, and they are all keen to find the easiest way to complete the sections through stuff they already do. Not that there's anything wrong with doing an activity already, and deciding to continue it as a challenge in some way - really trying to get a harder level, or fitting it in when timing would make it easy to quit, or whatever - but simply say 'oh well I was going to do that anyway, so I can make it count', or 'oh I can get someone to say that I've done that enough', or 'oh I've always helped out so-and-so with that, so that will do for volunteering', whatever takes the least effort. Whereas I like hearing about the ones who choose new activities that they might not have had the chance to try, or who do a more serious course in something they've done as a hobby, or who find a volunteering opportunity that relates to something they're interested in, etc - such a good chance to get involved in things they might find harder to do on their own, or later in life, or whatever, and to see what they're capable of or what they might find a new-found passion for, or whatever. It just seems a little disappointing to hear from people who say 'oh it's all stuff I do anyway'. There is definitely something to be said for have the dedication to do something long term, so I do appreciate the effort it takes to continue trumpet lessons in Year 11 when you might have not had time anyway, but for a lot of children, doing those things they've always done actually comes fairly easily, and it woudl be nice to see them challenge themselves a bit more. Whereas for someone who doesn't/hasn't done all these things, or had those chances, taking up some of those same activities would be more in terms of personal development. It has to be up to individuals to choose what is a challenge for them personally, but a lot of pupils don't seem to do that anymore, and as a result, I don't think it necessarily shows all that much to future educational institutions or employers - I'd want to ask someone with their Gold Dof E, so what did you gain? How did you challenge yourself? What did you learn about yourself? What did you learn about teamwork or persistence or ...? I wouldn't just look at it and assume that the person had any particular qualities.

TheOnlyLivingBoyInNewCross Thu 12-Jan-17 20:54:58

It depends what is meant by "important". If "important" means "is necessary for a UCAS form/job application" and that's the only thing that matters then no, it's not - ditch it.

Blacksox Thu 12-Jan-17 21:03:29

I have been told repeatedly that for UCAS, it doesn't matter.

So if that's what is important for you about DofE, don't bother.

However, my eldest has recently completed his gold and it has been very rewarding for him - especially the residential element that he had to organise himself. The younger one is doing his bronze and it has nudged him to do things that otherwise, he just wouldn't bother with.

GrumpyOldBag Fri 13-Jan-17 15:06:41

I would add that although my DS did not complete his DofE, the experience of working in a charity shop even just for a few hours a week for a few weeks was beneficial - he is shy and spends most of his time surgically attached to his computer so it helped get him out of himself, try a new experience & learn a bit more about the real world.

Jeeves93 Sat 14-Jan-17 00:11:52

Firstly it shouldn't be stressful. Actually, judging by what you are saying, she is already doing loads of stuff that would count for it anyway so it should be easy. The only thing that is a bit of extra work is some volunteering, and that is only an hour a week for a few months. She could probably do it via Guides. It isn't the end of the world if she doesn't do it, but if she is doing all that and doesn't do it, I would say she is mad!

Like I tell everyone who does DofE, it won't get you a job by itself, but it says something about the individual and sets them apart from others.

BackforGood Sat 14-Jan-17 00:19:28

I was going to say the same as Jeeves - not sure why it would be stressful, she just needs her leaders / coaches / teachers to sign off what she is already doing.
Its only the expeditions that would be extra, and at bronze thats just 2 days x 2

FiveHoursSleep Sat 14-Jan-17 15:08:29

The bit she's finding stressful is the bit after school on a Thursday, it's not leaving her with much time to get home and get to work afterwards.
And she's not looking forward to the expeditions. Apparently last year some of the girls got chased by cows and she's not a fan of them.
But yes, she is doing most of the stuff already, so it seems a shame not to do the official stuff.

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