OHS Inspires

We’re thrilled to introduce our OHS Inspires programme, which takes our Sixth Form offering to new heights. Our Sixth Form students can dive into exciting masterclasses, covering a spectrum of subjects like the History of Art, Languages, Literature, Social Sciences, Classics, Science, and Medicine. 


Our new series of masterclasses builds on OHS’s well-established tradition of academic excellence, and provides our students with further opportunities to embrace intellectual challenge and go beyond GCSE and A Level.

The masterclasses enable students to deepen their knowledge and understanding, explore their interests and engage critically with a wide range of disciplines, and to be ready for the next steps of their education at top selecting universities.  Each masterclass is delivered by one of our OHS Inspires Mentors, a group of academics who are also supervising our Sixth Form students in their extended research projects.

Through the programme, we strive to ensure that the masterclasses cover a range of different areas and disciplines to reflect our students’ diverse and varied academic interests. Each series of masterclasses is a series of 4 or 5 sessions run at lunchtime or after school, and we expect students to commit to the whole series so that they can get the maximum benefit from them.

Inspires Mentors

Our Inspires Mentors are seasoned academics and available to share their wealth of research experience and specialist knowledge, guiding Sixth Form students through their Extended Research Projects. 

In addition to supervising our Sixth Form students in their Extended Research Projects OHS Inspires Mentors offer a range of exciting masterclasses open to all students in Year 10, Year 11 and Sixth Form.

OHS Inspires Mentors - Lillian

Lillian Fontaine

Ms Lillian Fontaine is an ‘Inspires’ Mentor, supervising the Year 12 Extended Research Project and running some masterclasses on French literature. She has just submitted her DPhil in Modern Languages at the University of Oxford, where she is also a stipendiary lecturer. Lillian completed a Bachelor of Arts/Languages at the University of Sydney, followed by an Honours Degree in 2017 for which my thesis, written in French, was awarded the University Medal. She also spent some time studying at Sciences Po, Paris in 2015. Her research interests lie predominantly in the field of francophone postcolonial studies, with a focus on contemporary Algerian literature in French.

Outside of academia, she can often be found taking refuge in cafés with a good book. She enjosy baroque music, weight-lifting, and seeking out new coffee/food joints with friends, as well as attempting (and failing) to master cryptic crosswords!

OHS Inspires Mentors - Stephan

Stephan Nitu

Stephan is an ancient historian interested in historical method and epistemology; his DPhil is about reconceptualizing the Classical Athenian economy, which has been ‘measured’ by scholars applying modern frameworks to give misleading conclusions about how remarkable economic growth and other indices were. He looks at these knowledge claims and goes through the biases and cognitive pitfalls that are otherwise left unaddressed. In the past, I’ve worked on historiography, sense perceptions (the cognitive and social consequences of an oral society, as Archaic Greece largely was), and the Roman Republic.

Stephan is interested in the study of positive Humanities, i.e. the ways in which the Humanities add value to our lives and enable human flourishing. This entails, for example, historical and educational perspectives on ideas like happiness, love, or strengths of character such as self-discipline, leadership, etc.

OHS Inspires Mentors - Mike

Michael Johnstone

Dr Michael Johnstone is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Gloucestershire, and he teaches in the Department for Continuing Education at the University of Oxford. With a first degree in sociology and a PhD in free will and determinism in contemporary historical fiction, he has taught across the humanities and social sciences, but his specialism is in Creative Writing. Publishing as D.D. Johnston, he is a critically acclaimed novelist, described by the Financial Times as “Bringing light to a dark world” and by the Morning Star as “One of the country’s most important left-wing fiction writers”. In his free time, he’s a keen distance runner and is completing an MSc in sports coaching.

OHS Inspires Mentor

Anna Wilmore

Anna has recently completed my doctorate at St Anne’s College Oxford on ‘Late Medieval Marian Lyric in Urban Spaces’, exploring poetry about the Virgin Mary in medieval French and German cities. She is interested in the relationship between piety and play, and how these two elements interact in devotional lyric composed for a compositional context. Anna loves being able to work with manuscripts, and in her next project she intends to focus more closely on manuscript transmission and materiality.

Anna currently works as a Stipendiary Lecturer in German at Somerville, teaching translation into and out of German and medieval German literature. She also teaches all of the first-year course, which encompasses modern drama and prose, and offer tutorials on medieval lyric for the French sub-faculty.  She finds it a joy to lecture at Somerville, which is also the college where she studied her undergraduate degree in French and German. After graduating, Anna qualified as a secondary school teacher before returning to academia for an MSt and then DPhil. She has lived abroad for part of her studies, spending a year teaching English in Vienna, and living in Tübingen in Germany on a research scholarship. Anna has recently took on the role of co-Executive Officer for the Society for the Study of Medieval Languages and Literature, which publishes the journal Medium Ævum.

Outside of work, she is an avid reader and particularly enjoys reading fantasy and historical fiction, and in the last few years, has also been getting into science fiction. Anna is also a keen cook, always on the lookout for new and exciting vegetarian recipes. She has long been on a mission to prepare as much from scratch as possible and has been baking all her bread for several years and last summer she began a sourdough starter, which she now uses for all her baking. At the weekend, she helps at her local church, helping prepare children to make their First Holy Communion. Anna also volunteers with the Oxford Companions of the Order of Malta, who run a weekly shower project for the homeless, offering food, hot drinks, company, and the opportunity for a shower.


Considering OHS?

Please review the key admission dates and deadlines, to ensure you don’t miss out on applying for a place. If you have further questions, contact our friendly Admissions team who are happy to help.

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