Become a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's School

Every year we appoint a team of Graduate Assistants who have just finished university and are interested in a career either in education or pastoral care.

The Role

These 1-year positions are very varied and fulfilling and offer great opportunities for female graduates interested in the pastoral care of young people. The primary role of the Graduate Assistant is to work within a boarding house, assist with the smooth running of the house and provide pastoral care to our students.

The Graduate Assistants will be expected to give support to the House staff team by managing wake-ups and bed times, registering girls at meal times, administering medication, running evening activities and general pastoral care.

Evening activities for the boarders are a main part of boarding house life and Graduate Assistants will run varied activities such as pumpkin carving, boba tea making, beachball, glass painting, escape rooms, quizzes, house parties, Lunar New Year celebrations and more. These activities are chosen, planned and run by the GAs and we always welcome new ideas based on skills and interests. 

Other responsibilities in the boarding house can include:

  • Supervise prep sessions
  • Covering in the house office
  • Creating activity posters
  • Update house blog or writing house newsletters
  • Writing stories for marketing/social media
  • Organising lunch orders for the weekends
  • Arranging cards/cakes for girls’ birthdays
  • Updating Schoolbase and OneNote
  • Ordering Taxis for students
  • Organising pupil rotas
  • Collecting post and stores for the house

In addition, they will have other responsibilities in school depending on her areas of expertise and interests.

General school responsibilities include:

  • Lifeguarding (training provided)
  • Break/lunch/tea duty
  • Office duty

Graduate Assistants have the opportunity to develop areas of expertise and interests by assisting in various parts of the school of their choosing. This could include:

  • Assisting/Team Teaching in subjects such as Art, PE, Drama, Maths, Media, Science, Psychology etc.
  • Supporting the marketing or events teams 
  • Any area of school life the GA is interested in assisting

The Boarding Houses

There are four boarding houses, a junior house, Michell (L4-U4) and three Senior Houses, Holmes, Maddock and Wilkins (L5-U6). The boarding and day students are looked after by Heads of Year during the school day based in Wisdome (4), Webbe (U4) Ffyler (L5), Boulte (U5) and the Sixth Form are based in The Space. There are three types of boarding at Queen Anne’s reflecting the number of nights the students stay overnight – full boarding, flexi 3-4 and flexi 2. There is also occasional boarding. The boarding house teams consist of a Boarding House Parents (BHP), Deputy HP (DHP), Matron and Graduate Assistants (GA).

Accommodation

A single room in the dedicated 4-bedroom Graduate Assistant flat on-site will be provided. The flat is furnished and comes with a kitchenette, living area, washing machine and large bathroom. All meals will be provided in term-time, free of charge.

Careers

Being a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's School provides opportunities for varied experience in a busy school environment, skill development and employability beyond the role. Many Graduate Assistants go on to work in teaching, boarding, pastoral care, education settings and other disciplines. The role is a great way to gain experience before embarking on a PGCE or to gain paid work experience after graduating university.

Apply now for September 2024 or contact [email protected] for more information.

The Graduate Assistant Team 2023 - 2024

Find out their achievements and their advice to you below!

Miss Malcolm - Graduate Assistant Maddock 23/24

What do you enjoy about being a Graduate Assistant and working in the boarding houses? 

Working in the boarding houses has, for me, been the highlight of the role. As a Graduate Assistant, I have been able to focus on building positive relationships with pupils and enhancing their boarding life by running activities, organising trips and generally spending time with them in the house. I enjoy the combination of routine and spontaneity that comes with working in a boarding house; whether we spend the evening making TikToks or slime, having a sudden water fight with another house, or just chatting in the office, no day is the same. Furthermore, the combination of deep engagement with boarding life and more traditional school life makes the role varied and exciting. It has also given me a valuable, post-university, opportunity to develop a wider skill set than may be possible in other schools.

What is your favourite memory/memories of working at Queen Anne's?

While it's difficult to narrow them down, my favourite memories of working at Queen Anne's School include taking boarders to Reading Winter Wonderland before the Christmas holiday; delivering my first lecture to A Level history students; seeing the amazing job that the Sixth Formers in my house did in the setup of a haunted house activity at Halloween; evening chats in the office and the overwhelming support I felt from my house when I received my Master's dissertation result.

What have you achieved in the wider school community at Queen Anne's?

In the wider school community, my greatest achievement has been the delivery of a mini lecture series discussing The Cold War in East Asia. The aim of these lectures was to enrich student's understanding of the topic by going beyond the curriculum, while giving them insight into how higher education can be presented. The lectures were delivered to A-Level history students, who were highly engaged and asked brilliant questions about the content. 

What advice would you give to someone who was considering becoming a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's?

I would advise anyone considering becoming a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's School to just go for it, especially if they are interested in education but would like the chance to develop a more varied skill set; being a Graduate Assistant is a valuable opportunity to gain experience in both education and pastoral care, while undertaking school-wide commitments that curate a tailored skill set for your future goals.

To get the most out of the role, I advise getting in touch with areas of the school that interest you as soon as possible, so that you can experience a greater number of departments. Similarly, bounce your ideas off those around you no matter how equipped you feel to make them happen, as there will always be someone with the relevant experience who can help you. I would also suggest taking the time to connect with the other Graduate Assistants as best as you can, as this will enhance your teamwork and help you run the best possible activities for students. Most of all, I strongly advise having fun with the role! Don't be afraid to sing badly at karaoke, or take part in sports activities; students will recognise your effort and participation, and this will enhance everyone's boarding experience.

What will you be doing after you leave this role at Queen Anne's?

Upon leaving Queen Anne's School, I will be moving to Japan to teach English. My role as Graduate Assistant has given me the space to explore working in education in a fun environment, and the opportunity to develop relevant experience such as observing English as an Additional Language classes, and lecture delivery. I have learnt an invaluable amount from the other house staff I work alongside, who have been brilliant mentors throughout my time at Queen Anne's School. They have positively influenced my confidence and professional skills, and been steadfast in their support of my ambition to work abroad. Most importantly, my role as Graduate Assistant has confirmed to me my professional ambition to work in education and has shown me how enriching, fun and engaging education can be made. It has been the ideal graduate job for me.

Miss Charlton - Graduate Assistant Michell 23/24

What made you choose to become a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's School?

Having completed a degree in Music and aspiring to enter a career in teaching, I was impressed by the opportunities that a position as a graduate assistant would provide. The role would allow me to gain valuable experience by volunteering in a classroom setting and enhance my pastoral approach with students, thereby furthering my training and development in the field of education.

What do you enjoy about being a Graduate Assistant and working in the boarding houses?

I have thoroughly enjoyed working as part of the amazing pastoral care team at Michell House, where I have learned a great deal from all the staff members. They have made me feel at ease and have been very supportive. It has been wonderful supporting the girls in the boarding house this year and watching them grow, not only academically but also in confidence, transforming themselves into wonderful students.

What is your favourite memory/memories of working at Queen Anne's?

There are so many memorable experiences to choose from, but one that stands out the most is the Halloween celebrations. We hosted a Halloween party for all the boarders, transforming the school hall into a Halloween-themed disco. Additionally, we set up a haunted house in part of the main school. I felt truly involved in the community of Queen Anne's School.

What have you achieved in the boarding houses at Queen Anne's?

I believe my biggest achievement is the relationship I have been able to form with the students. When I finished university, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in education, and I believe that building strong relationships with students is a crucial part of that. Over the year, these relationships have blossomed, allowing me to grow in confidence within the boarding community and affirming that I have the right attributes to become a successful teacher in the future. So, thank you, Michell—I will really miss you all!

What advice would you give to someone who was considering becoming a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's?

I would advise new graduate assistants to have confidence in your ability. Prior to joining Queen Anne's, I found the prospect of becoming a graduate assistant quite daunting having not heard much information regarding the position before. However, the Michell House team made me feel so welcome and taught me so much. Another piece of advice I would give is that if you think a career in teaching is for you, this role is the perfect stepping stone. Not only will it provide you with invaluable experience, but the working hours will also help you build the stamina needed to pursue a career in teaching afterward.

What will you be doing after you leave this role at Queen Anne's?

During the next academic year I will be undertaking a postgraduate qualification in primary education. I feel that working at Queen Anne's has given me vital insight into education particularly the importance of pastoral support for pupils. Equally working as a graduate assistant has also enabled me to further develop the skills of resilience and stamina which will play an impactful role in my training and eventual career in teaching.

Miss Standing - Graduate Assistant Michell 22-24

What made you choose to become a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's School?

The different career pathways it allowed me to explore, the ability to work on numerous employability skills, the enjoyment I would get out of working and interacting with the children and the on site year round accommodation on offer.

What is your favourite memory/memories of working at Queen Anne's?

My favourite memories involve running the activities in the evenings and chatting to the girls. A great example was working with the house prefect team to create our Christmas party or the Easter egg hunt.

What have you achieved in the wider school community at Queen Anne's?

I helped to introduce practical Adobe skills to the 6th form media students, through a group of lessons I taught them the software and how to create strong course work pieces. With the support of the media teacher giving me valuable feedback and praise, it was a great help to secure my teacher training.

What advice would you give to someone who was considering becoming a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's?

It can be hard work but it is a very rewarding and engaging job role that has opportunities to progress past being a graduate assistant or allow you to explore your future career. For example you could spend one term helping the Art department to get a taste of teaching and then the next term you can be helping the Events team.

What will you be doing after you leave this role at Queen Anne's?

I will be progressing on to a year of teacher training, which my 2 years here has helped me to fully understand what a teachers job is and that it is a rewarding career that I wish to pursue. With my role at QAS allowing me to have a head start understanding safeguarding along with having confidence as I have had the experience of already run my own lessons successfully.

Miss Lee - Graduate Assistant Wilkins 23/24

What made you choose to become a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's School? 

I studied in an all-girl secondary school which I had truly enjoyed, so Queen Anne's being an all-girls school intrigued me. I studied Psychology of Education for my master's degree, which I hoped to utilise to develop my knowledge to connect with teenagers. 

What do you enjoy about being a Graduate Assistant and working in the boarding houses?

I enjoy listening to and answering students' queries in the boarding house as I feel trusted by them. Owing to the international nature of boarding, I feel capable of understanding the thoughts and feelings of the international boarders and support them to overcome their homesickness.

What is your favourite memory/memories of working at Queen Anne's?

My favourite memories of working at Queen Anne's is working with the Music Department, especially participating in the concerts inside and outside of school. Be it a solo performance or accompaniment, I enjoyed doing rehearsals with the girls, chatting with them about the pieces, and resonating emotionally with them.

What have you achieved in the boarding houses at Queen Anne's?

I made the first attempt in sushi making, leading yoga, and organising festive events for the boarders. It was truly satisfying and rewarding when I received positive feedback from the boarders and knew that they had enjoyed participating in them.

What have you achieved in the wider school community at Queen Anne's?

I have been assisting in the Music Department and one of the greatest achievements is accompanying a violinist in the Middle School Concert. We had been working together closely to achieve the same goal and were glad we did it. Aside from music, I also helped with the marking of Chinese GCSEs in the Modern Languages Department. I was happy to have offered advice to the students on their areas on improvements.

What will you be doing after you leave this role at Queen Anne's and how has QAS helped you in your future endeavours?

I will be pursuing a graduate role in another school with a focus on music. Thanks to the Music Department, I have been able to identify my career goals and further progress my development in piano playing.

Miss Benny - Graduate Assistant Holmes 23/24

What made you choose to become a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's School? 

When I was studying at the University of Dundee, I became interested in teaching art to younger children. As a result, I was thrilled when I came across the Graduate Assistant vacancy in QAS. What attracted me to the position was the opportunity to experience an educational setting which further prepares those who are interested in pursuing a career as a teacher. I was also keen on building my skills in interacting with, and understanding, children and young people.

What do you enjoy about being a Graduate Assistant and working in the boarding houses?

I enjoy carrying out the daily tasks I am assigned each day in the boarding house - be it doing the laundry, emptying the dishwashers, checking fridges, or checking in on girls. I have learned lots of skills while doing these tasks. I also enjoy planning activities and creating posters. The House staff are fun and helpful; and perhaps what I enjoy the most, and also am thankful for, is the close relationship I have with some of the girls. Talking to them and hearing how their day has been is always a delight.

What is your favourite memory/memories of working at Queen Anne's?

The summer months has been so beautiful, and the Trinity term would likely be my most favourite memory. It was during this term that I grew closer to the girls, became more confident in my role, learned how to improve my communication, and also enjoy the beautiful green surroundings around me. Moreover, I felt nudged to make the most of my time here and spend as much time as I can this term with the girls and staff before I say goodbye.

What have you achieved in the wider school community at Queen Anne's?

Volunteering to cover when another member of staff was absent, stopping to talk with a lone colleague and noticing quieter members of staff have been special for me. Doing these things have helped me get to know others and build friendly and trustworthy relationships with them. Being certified as a First-Aider has been a wonderful achievement along with helping out in the Art department at QAS. The latter has helped me in deciding what I truly want to pursue.

What advice would you give to someone who was considering becoming a Graduate Assistant at Queen Anne's?

Being a Graduate Assistant is hard work, but I feel that as long as you enjoy what you are doing, are committed and willing to learn and grow, you will find it rewarding. You will find lots of help and support from the House staff you'll be working with. They are always there to listen and help you as much as they can!

What will you be doing after you leave this role at Queen Anne's?

I look forward to working in a creative company as a pre-production artist and also doing some freelance work. I feel having some professional experience behind me would be beneficial before I start a career in teaching. My time at QAS has helped me realise that, especially after my interactions with the animation teacher here. I am so excited to see what lies ahead for me!