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Students get a taste of life at Oxbridge

21 September 2020  |  Jill Lundberg  |  Posted in: ,

Four students from Year 13 took up amazing opportunities with the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge this summer.  The courses are highly competitive and give students a taste of the Oxford or Cambridge undergraduate student experience. Students attended lectures and seminars in their chosen subject area, and received expert advice on the Oxbridge application and interview process. The courses were run virtually this year.

Sam Potter, James Longstaff and Sandesh Gurung attended the Oxford University UNIQ Summer School.  Sam took part in the Chemistry course, where he covered topics such as crystal structures, chirality, hydrogen fuel cells, DNA, and quantum chemistry. Students participated in tutorials covering physical, inorganic and organic branches of chemistry.

James attended the Engineering course, where he had the chance to sample the sheer scale of the application of engineering science, from robotics to uses in medicine and transport. Students were exposed to the breadth of possibilities that a degree, and career, in engineering can offer. James said: “It was a fun experience which allowed me to explore an area which I already found interesting to an increased depth, which increased my interest in the subject.”

Sandesh studied at the Mathematics summer school and said: “I I learned about matrices, Markov chains and explored modelling in 3-D with calculus. Whilst studying at this summer school, I was able to find out about university life, especially as a mathematician at a world-class university ”

Isabel Bacon attended the University of Cambridge Summer School in Biological Sciences: Zoology, Plant Sciences and Neuroscience in August 2020.  Sponsored by the Sutton Trust, this Summer School introduced the nature of Biology study at university. It included lectures on evolution, biodiversity, genetics and biochemistry.  A key focus of the course was to develop biological thinking skills, as well as problem-solving sessions, and a scientific “escape room” activity. Isabel was thrilled to be given a laptop by the Sutton Trust to complete the online summer school.

Isabel said: “The UNIQ Oxford Summer School and the Sutton Trust Cambridge Summer School allowed me to choose which course I felt was best for me as well as giving me lots of useful tips for writing my personal statement and how to have a successful interview. It also gave me some ideas for further reading.”

Ms Johnson, Assistant Head Teacher said: “These are great opportunities for students to gain valuable insights into Oxbridge degree courses.  Sam, James, Sandesh and Isabel have benefited hugely; it will definitely strengthen their university applications and enrich their sixth form experience.”

(photograph left to right: James, Isabel and Sam)


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