Year 13 reflections on their time at Gordonstoun

Two students from Year 13, Pip B and Anna S, reflect on their time at Gordonstoun, and the influence it has had as they prepare for their next adventures.

Gordonstoun Year 13 Leavers 2023

Pip B, Bruce House Year 13

Leaving my family and friends in New York to join at the start of Year 12, I didn’t know what to expect. I was leaving my comfort zone to try something new, and these two years have allowed me to push myself even further, while giving me experiences and friendships I am sure will last a lifetime.

Coming to Gordonstoun has given me the opportunity to do everything from pursuing my passion for kayaking to playing football with the first XI. It has also allowed me to stay in touch with the outdoors and challenge myself through STVs, Expeditions, and the Duke of Edinburgh’s award, all of which have provided some of the best memories I will take with me. Academically, the school has challenged me to go above and beyond the curriculum through the EPQ and essay competitions.

All this wouldn’t be possible without the home away from home I have found in Bruce House. As soon as I arrived, I felt welcomed into the fold, and I instantly formed close friendships that I am confident will last into the future.

Now, as I look forward to the University of Leeds and the new challenges that lie ahead, I know that the broad skillset and fortitude Gordonstoun has helped me to develop will serve me well, and I can’t wait to come back and visit a few years down the line!

Anna S, Plewlands House Year 13

I joined Gordonstoun Junior school when I was 8 years old and with such a small class of 6 it was easy to make life-long friends. Each year would bring new people and the next challenge to overcome, from performing in the school Orchestra to 4 nights in Cape Wrath.

These experiences became a regular occurrence while I was growing up, therefore I was constantly pushed and challenged. It meant moving into the senior school was not such a scary prospect but instead I was excited for the change. Being part of a boarding house was something that I had looked forward to since joining and being part of the Plewlands family certainly lived up to my high expectations. Always knowing you have such a large support system behind you and the group of people I went through my school career with have become such a large part of what makes up Gordonstoun.

My 10 years here have meant I have been given the opportunity to go on 13 expeditions which included canoeing the Great Glen as well as hiking to achieve my Gold DofE while learning not only to survive but actually enjoying being thrown into the toughest conditions. As well as 3 STVs on the blustery west coast of Scotland, having countless lifeguard shifts improving my communication, and a term spent on exchange in Christchurch New Zealand. Of course, not forgetting my academic lessons from Geography field trips to analysing texts in English have taught me discipline and increased my curiosity.

I know that these have all prepared me for my future and now I feel confident leaving the school ready for my next stage going onto the University of Edinburgh to pursue a career in speech and language therapy.