Who We Are

Peter Boursnell MBE:

Founder & Director of futureHigher


In June 2011, Peter was awarded an MBE for ‘Services to Fair Access to Higher Education’.

In September 2011, Peter set up and became Director of 'futureHigher', a Community Interest Company which supports students in applying to university.

Before that, he taught in London state comprehensive schools for 26 years. He was a Head of Sixth Form, a Deputy Head and a Headteacher, before moving to the Brent School Improvement Service as the Aimhigher Coordinator in 2004. During his time working in schools and as an Aimhigher Coordinator, he has given support and guidance to several thousand students on university applications. He has written hundreds of UCAS References and supported at least a thousand students in writing their UCAS Personal Statements.

For many years he has delivered talks, workshops and conferences for school and college students in Brent, in other London Boroughs and for various charitable and non-profit making organisations, including The Social Mobility Foundation, Teach First (HEAPS) and Pure Potential. To date, these talks and workshops have been delivered to around 10,000 students.

He has also organised and delivered workshops for Brent students (outside their school) at the Brent Training Centre and also run day trips to Oxbridge colleges. Approximately 2,000 Brent students have attended these events. He has also organised and run four residential trips to Oxbridge colleges for Brent students.

He initiated, has organised and run sixth form conferences for the Bar Council for the last five years. These conferences started in London but have now been delivered in Birmingham, Cardiff, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle.

He also delivers staff training on the university application process in London schools and for other organisations, including Teach First and UCAS.

Brent was the only Local Authority mentioned in the Milburn Report on Social Mobility, for the work Peter did in supporting students on the ‘Fair Access to the Professions’ agenda.

He has been:

  • The Founder and Chair (2009-2012) of the ‘Third Sector Forum: Fair Access to the Professions' (supported by the Cabinet Office)
  • A Trustee of the Social Mobility Foundation (and a former Interim Chief Executive Officer of the SMF)
  • A Trustee of Accessprofessions.com
  • A member of one of the panels which submitted evidence to the Milburn enquiry into Social Mobility
  • A member of the Student Loans Company Stakeholder Group (the sole school sector representative)
  • A contributor to the Independent Taskforce on Student Finance Information
  • A member of the DfE/UCAS ‘Qualifications and Progression Group' (the sole school sector representative)
  • A member of the Institute of Careers Guidance: Higher Education Advisers Community



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