Careers and Higher Education Counsellors
ESF Careers and Higher Education Counsellors [listed below] have expertise and experience of international placements at universities worldwide. As a group of schools, the counsellors work together in order to maximise opportunities for all our students.
They are from a range of backgrounds which adds to the expertise. They pool and monitor data on offers so that they can see if trends that might apply to their school and apply to others. They share expertise and collaborate on enquiries and investigations to improve the service.
By working together they also have access to the best professional development for counsellors and share experiences on overseas university visits.
Finally, contacts are shared and this culminates in all ESF schools being well known by institutions worldwide.
Chris Durbin (School Development Adviser - Secondary)
Chris Durbin is the secondary adviser for ESF. He works across all the secondary schools and the secondary sections of the PIS schools. He provides strategic direction for the development of higher education counselling by networking data on offers and university places attained by ESF students. He chairs the group of ESF Higher Education Counsellors who provide strategic advice to ESF and share collective wisdom and experience for the 900-1000 graduates of ESF schools each year.
Roger Wilkinson (Island School, and Chair of the ESF Higher Education Counsellors Development Group)
Roger has been the Head of Higher Education and Careers Guidance at Island School for more than five years. He is a teacher who graduated from Sheffield University in England with a degree in Geography and a PGCE in Secondary Education.
The aim of the department is to equip all students with the skills and provide them with resources and individualised counselling to ensure that they make informed decisions to achieve a progression that meets their needs and aspirations. Island School hosts the annual ESF Higher Education Fair every February which attracts over 100 institutions from around the world and brings all ESF students into direct contact with some of the key holders of advice and expertise regarding university applications and acceptances, and in many cases to introduce them directly to the admissions officers.
Rebecca Lucas-Timpany (Island School)
Rebecca Lucas-Timpany joined the Island School Higher Education team in January 2011. Rebecca has an LLB (Hons) and Bachelor of Arts from the University of Otago, New Zealand. She also has a Master's degree in Education, a Postgraduate Diploma in Careers Education and Development and a Graduate Certificate in College Admissions Counselling. Rebecca brings her advocacy and counselling skills from a broad range of professional practice as well as school settings to her role. She has a particular interest in helping students to explore and develop skills for career planning, including higher and further education learning pathways that will open career opportunities for them.
Suman Sachdev (Island School)
Suman is the Assistant Higher Education Counsellor at Island School. She joined the Higher Education team in January 2012. Suman graduated from St. Bede's College, Shimla, India with a major in Psychology. Since then she has developed specialist skills in librarianship which she uses in her role to help students locate helpful information and useful research materials. In addition, her special interest is in the Applied Learning Pathways and she really enjoys working with students on the many opportunities open to them after they leave Island School.
Catherine Schofield (West Island School)
Catherine is the Head of Careers at West Island School and is responsible for the strategic planning as well as the day to day running of the department. She has been the Head of Careers at the school for more than thirteen years. The students body has grown significantly and it has become more challenging to provide guidance and education to students applying to a wide range of destinations. It has also provided her with the motivation for the life-long learning she encourages in her students. Part of her education in the role has come through building a large network of contacts in universities around the world.
Ellie Tang (West Island School)
Ellie Tang is the Higher Education Counsellor at West Island School with a special interest in the Applied Learning Pathways and life-long learning. She joined ESF in 2005. Previously, She worked as an Education Counsellor for the British Council in Hong Kong, a Lecturer at the Hong Kong Baptist University and a Senior Editor at Pearson (Asia) Education. She also taught sixth form students at local schools. She is currently completing her doctoral thesis in comparative post-16 education provisions. Ellie's target is to develop the progression routes for BTEC students in a wider range of countries.
Laura Maddison (West Island School)
Laura obtained her MA (Hons) degree from Edinburgh University and prior to this role worked as a researcher for the Scottish Parliament and in the field of Public Affairs and Public Relations. She is currently studying a Master of Counselling at Monash University. She enjoys working with young people and being part of a team helping students reach their goals and make the transition from school to university.
Chris Wightman (King George V School)
Chris is the Head of Careers and Higher Education at KGV School and is responsible for the whole school development of Careers and Higher Education guidance. He has had extensive leadership experience as the Head of College in the Senior School of KGV from 2008-2014. This has involved leading a large team of tutors as well as counselling students on all aspects of their social and emotional well-being as well as guiding and supporting students academically through their chosen course of study. In the UK, he has also been the Head of Biology and Psychology at two different secondary schools. Chris studied Marine Biology at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne and obtained his Post Graduate Certificate in Secondary Education from Lancaster University. He has worked as a Biology Teacher at KGV School since 2001.
Terence Yau (King George V School)
Terence is one of the Higher Education Counsellors at KGV School. Besides providing counselling service and support to students and parents, he also assists the head of Careers and Guidance at the school to raise service standards and improve internal practices to an even higher level in Careers Counselling at KGV School. Terence obtained his Bachelor's degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Management Information Systems and Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice from University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Additionally, he obtained an Advanced Certificate in Youth Counselling from the University of Hong Kong's School of Professional and Continuing Education in June 2011.
Cecilia Lau (King George V School)
Cecilia is one of the Higher Education Counsellors at KGV School. She obtained her Bachelor's degree in Psychology and Master's degree in Higher Edcuation from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Before joining ESF, Cecilia served as an Assistant Complex Director for University Housing while completing her Master's degree and spent two years working as a course consultant in advising students to pursue their higher education studies in the United States. Cecilia enjoys assisting students in identifying suitable pathways that best satisfy their goals and interests.
Berina Chan (King George V School)
Berina works at KGV School as a Higher Education Counsellor. She graduated from the University of Toronto, Canada with an Honours Bachelor of Science degree, specializing in Psychology. She then continued her studies at City University of Hong Kong and obtained her Master's degree in Social Science, Counselling. Berina’s desideratum at KGV is to equip the parents and students with informative advice and required resources for them to make their strategic plans for the students’ future endeavours. Prior to joining ESF, she was a Gymnastics Coach, an Applied Behaviour Analysis Therapist, a Teaching Assistant at the Open University of Hong Kong and also volunteered as a Counsellor for various charitable organizations. She believes in life-long learning and would love to inspire her students to achieve their goals and dreams.
Martin Campion (South Island School)
Martin is the Head of Careers at South Island School and has been in that position for a number of years. He has established the school as the Island SAT Centre for ESF students. Martin was awarded the Council of International Schools Peggy Templeton Strong Award in 2010. This award was established to honour a member of the CIS Guidance community who has made a significant contribution to international school guidance. He has set a school goal of continuing to develop the Higher Education guidance. The school website that he has designed is a tremendous resource for parents and students.
Lauren Sharman (South Island School)
Lauren is the Higher Education Counsellor at South Island School. She joined ESF in August 2010 from the United Kingdom. Her previous career was based in the higher education sector and has included Sheffield Hallam University, the University of Cumbria and the University of Reading, where she worked in marketing and student recruitment. Lauren's cross school goal is to develop strategies for careers guidance for students with individual needs.
Janie Digby (South Island School)
Janie Digby joined South Island School from the University of Bristol, having spent 5 years working in its International Recruitment and Admissions team. In this role she worked across top schools in Southeast Asia, interviewing prospective medics, lawyers and engineers. She also advised top international schools and the British Council about how to make successful applications to the best and most competitive universities in the world. Prior to this, she worked on a longitudinal epidemiology study at the University of Bristol. She has an honours degree from Lancaster University and is looking forward to helping students access the best universities for their abilities.
Patrick Campbell (Sha Tin College)
Patrick is the Head of Careers at Sha Tin College. He has been in that position for a number of years. Patrick has established the school as the Kowloon SAT Centre for ESF students. It is also the PSAT Centre for KGV School, Renaissance and Sha Tin Colleges. He has co-authored a set of ethical practice guidelines for ESF Careers, Higher Education departments and counsellors.
David Stott (Sha Tin College)
David is the Higher Education Counsellor at Sha Tin College. He is in charge of UCAS applications. He balances this work with his teaching in the Design and Technology department. He co-authored the above report on ethical practice guidelines for use across ESF schools.
Susie Blomfield (Discovery College)
Before joining Discovery College in January 2013, Susie worked for ten years in a leading international school in Hong Kong as the Head of University Guidance Counselling where she played a key role in the development and implementation of an efficient university guidance office in Hong Kong and also in schools throughout China. Educated in the UK with a BA (hons) degree in English and History, Susie also has a Master's degree in Education and a Postgraduate Diploma of Education from the University of Hong Kong. She is very excited about joining Discovery College and working with the first graduating cohort of students.
Amanda Yan (Discovery College)
Amanda is one of the Higher Education Counsellors at Discovery College. She obtained her BA in English Language & Literature and her PGCE in China, and her Master’s degree in English Language Teaching in the UK. Prior to joining ESF, Amanda worked in an IB school in China as the Director of University Counselling Centre for five years. She is keen to prepare students for the important transition from school to university.
Aletha Rossiter (Renaissance College)
Aletha is the Head of the Further Education department and has a dual role at Renaissance College as she also teaches Year 7 and IB Diploma English. She is from Canada and has a Master's degree in Education. She has led the department through six years of development which has seen the number of students in the senior school double.
Gigi Lam (Renaissance College)
Gigi is the Further Education Counsellor at Renaissance College who has a Master’s degree in Counselling and a Certificate in College Counselling. She has worked at a leading international school in Hong Kong before joining ESF. Gigi’s aim is to help students identify further education opportunities that match their strengths and interests, and provide support and advice in completing the necessary applications. The ESF-wide target for this school is to further develop our relationship with local universities.
Fion Ng (ESF Career Development Services)
Fion is the Career Development Manager for ESF Career Development Services (SEN) under the ESF Education Team. She is responsible for whole school Learning Support Class Years 12 and 13 work placement and vocational training. she obtained her degree in Business from Curtin University, PGDE and Master's degree in Education from Edith Cowan University. Before joining ESF, Fion served as a Student Advisor and Instructor at Curtin University. She also worked as a Business and Learning Support Teacher in Australia. Fion enjoys assisting students in identifying suitable career and further study pathways that best satisfy their goals and interests.
Wilma Shen - Career Counsellor & IBCP Coordinator
Wilma’s goal is to introduce students in the Middle Years Programme to the real “World of Works” and help them explore subject choices, career interests and aspirations, as well as gain insight into the concept of employability skills for future workplaces. She will also focus on the IBCP programme development and work on strategies for gaining university and employer recognition of the programme, and provide career guidance to IBCP students.