AQA Unlocking Potential is a transformational mentoring programme for students aged from 11-19 years of age, delivered in partnership between education charity AQA and Dame Kelly Holmes Trust.

AQA Unlocking Potential aims to raise student's aspirations and expectations on future life goals, whether from school to Further Education, Further Education to Higher Education, or into training and employment. Our programmes are delivered by world class athletes, who we know make exceptional role models and mentors, using their amazing experience from the world of sport – discipline, perseverance, resilience and self-belief to name but a few. Young people are to be nominated by their teachers who believe that they would benefit from mentoring support from our world class athletes to develop life skills and increase their confidence, self-belief and motivation.

Young people nominated should currently not be fulfilling their potential and are being held back by one or more of the following:

  • challenging personal circumstances
  • low self-esteem and a lack of confidence
  • lack of local opportunities.

Those who have demonstrated their strength of character, despite being held back by one or more of the above, should demonstrate one or more of the following attributes:

  • commitment – have shown willingness to give their time and energy to something that they believe in or want to do
  • enthusiasm – have shown energetic interest in a particular subject or activity and an eagerness to be involved
  • determination – have shown the ability to continue trying to do something, although it is challenging
  • integrity – have shown that they can stick to a set of strong moral principles. 

Read our recent AQA Unlocking Potential Success Stories






AQA Unlocking Potential runs from December to July and nominations usually open in September or October. Follow us on Twitter to be alerted when nominations open.