Year 12 student, Freya West, says she feels ‘much more confident’ in making a strong competitive application to The University of Oxford next term after taking part in a week’s digital summer school.
Freya, a former Maricourt Catholic High School pupil, found out about Oxford’s UNIQ courses through college Oxbridge co-ordinator, Matt Fisher. She has hopes to study Law at university and had been considering an Oxbridge application but just wasn’t sure if that route was right for her.
UNIQ courses run in the Spring and Summer and give a taste of the Oxford undergraduate student experience. Usually participants live in an Oxford college for a week, attend lectures and seminars in their chosen subject area, and receive expert advice on the Oxford application process, as well as having plenty of time to socialise and do some sightseeing.
This year, due to the COVID 19 pandemic the summer school had to take place digitally. This didn’t stop Freya enjoying the experience and making the most of the opportunity. She says: ‘In normal circumstances, I would have gone to Oxford and stayed in St Peter’s college for 5 days. Although this year the course had to be done virtually, it was still amazing and I loved every minute of it!’
She continues: ‘This week has truly changed everything for me (for the better). At the start of the week I felt as though I was applying to Oxford without any chance of success and felt like I wouldn’t belong there. However, my viewpoint has completely changed. My confidence in making a strong application has increased massively. I now know what is expected during the application process, what to expect if/when students get a place at the university and that Oxford is not just for well-off upper class who have gone to top private schools. If you truly love your subject and are passionate about it, you deserve a place at the university just as much as the Etonians. The ambassadors that supported me this week were truly inspirational as well as the other students that I have met on my course, it was nice to meet likeminded people.’
UNIQ is open to students studying in their first year of further education, who are based at UK state schools/colleges. Students make a single application between December and January and can be selected to participate in either UNIQ Spring and Summer or UNIQ Digital. Former Winstanley student, Eliza Bellerby, who is now studying at Oxford, is an advocate of the UNIQ programme and her testimonial can be found here https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=27&v=8-_v36SPXcc&feature=emb_logo
To read Freya’s full report on her week on UNIQ please Click here