Newport Girls' High School

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Oxbridge encouragement

4 February 2020

During Monday lunchtime, year 11 and year 12 had the opportunity to listen to a talk given by Gaia Lambert from St John’s College Cambridge. She informed us about university life and provided a more in-depth look into the top universities like Oxford and Cambridge. We learned what the competitive application process is like as well as how the college system works. She re-iterated the ideas that to be successful at these world class universities you need to stand out, be hard working and driven.

Here are some of the top tips we learned:

  • The application process is competitive- you need to be passionate about your subject and show off the skills you have. Even when you are commenting on your extra -curricular activities you need to relate your skills back to your degree choice or college choice.
  • Just apply - Even if you think the chances of you getting into a top university are slim apply anyways, you have a chance of getting in if you apply, you have a 0% chance getting in if you don’t. You may as well take a risk because you may get an unexpected outcome.
  • Do something you enjoy- If you’re going to do a degree in a subject, make sure you enjoy it. This will take lots of research, and the options available are bountiful. You will be spending three years (or more) studying it as well as a lot of independent study, so enjoying your degree of choice is very important. Don’t feel pressured to do something you feel you “should” do, always do something you want to do.

Gaia was really inspiring to listen to, especially as she was once a girl in a rural grammar school too.       

(A Hill, Year 11)