Thomas is a Music and Sports Scholar. He went to Hoe Bridge Prep School in Woking, so he’d already had a taste of Reed’s music as he sang in the Beatles Medley at our Gala Concert at Cadogan Hall in 2019. He’s a member of the Swimming Academy and part of the Orchestra, the Choir and has his own band that he performs with. Thomas lived in America from the age of 7 to 10, so experienced a different approach to learning in his early years.
What prompted you to want to join Reed’s?
When I came back to England it was important to our family that Reed’s welcomed us and were interested in our time and experience in America, which they were. I partake in a lot of different activities and whilst I think academic studies are important, I believe that extra-curricular subjects are also very important. This is where a student can make lots of choices and grow and find what they enjoy. I found that Reed’s particularly excelled at accommodating different hobbies and activities and that made it so appealing to be encouraged and supported in doing what I enjoyed.
Are there any particular subjects that you find most enjoyable, and if so, why?
I particularly enjoy History, English and Music. I have always enjoyed Music – I’ve been doing it since I was very young and find it fascinating. But recently I have become more intrigued with History and English because I’m interested in how such small factors could shape the course of history and I enjoy the analytical side of the questions in both subjects where there is no right answer.
Are there any teachers or mentors at school who have had a significant impact on your learning journey?
I think all the teachers equally project important qualities and impact me in their own ways. My Head of House, Mr. Ha, is the most significant teacher - he has really opened my eyes about what I could achieve. He is always there for me and supports me whatever I do and always helps me learn from my mistakes. Mr. Smith, my Music teacher, has been inspirational. He has followed his passion for music and is giving me great encouragement as I prepare for my music GCSE. My brother, who is two years above me, has also always played a huge role in shaping me. He is a great example and role model and brings out the more competitive side of me that helps me to want to achieve great things.
How has technology played a role in your learning experience at school?
Technology plays a huge role for me. When I lived in America, we barely used pen and paper, we did all our work on iPads/Chromebooks. When we moved back, I was more proficient than my peers. At Reed’s, my teachers are open to new uses of technology to aid note taking, accommodate different learning styles and understand the capabilities of such powerful tools. This works well for me with my US experience.
How did you find the experience of transitioning to Reed's and building new friendships?
Although a lot of my friends from my old school came to Reed’s, I was still scared and not sure what to expect. I quickly found that I fell into a new group that all shared similar interests and realised that no matter what you enjoyed, there would be someone for you to share your interest that you could find through clubs, classes or just by taking the first step and talking to a new person at break.
What extracurricular achievements or projects are you most proud of?
I have always pushed myself and at Reed’s I have been given lots of opportunities to do that; whether its breaking Surrey swimming relay records at the Surrey Schools Swimming Champions in 2023, competing in the Summer National Swimming Championships of my home country of Scotland and improving my swimming personal best times. I love the musical side at Reed’s, especially performing with my band at the House Charity Revues, performing in the Orchestra at the school concerts and singing with the Choir. Recently I pushed myself to run in a 10k race for my house charity. I believe at Reed’s there are almost too many things I am proud of being part of!
What aspect of Reed’s do you value the most?
I love being encouraged to do lots of extra-curricular activities. The teachers give you lots of support and so I am able to manage my music commitments and performances, my swimming training schedule, as well as keeping on top of my schoolwork. There are lots of house activities too - I am proud to be part of Blathwayt House! Whilst we are being encouraged to try lots of other activities, the teachers are always there are ready to support me with academic questions too.
Are there any specific goals or aspirations you have for the future in your educational journey?
Academics and passing exams are important and I will set out to achieve the very best I can. My dream is to be able to perform my own music and make a living doing what I enjoy the most, which is music. Over the next three years, I want to take every opportunity that Reed’s gives me to work out how to do that. I believe that hard work will always pay off and that hard work combined with a great education means I will be able to achieve my goals and excel in life.