Students Heading to Oxbridge

Four students at The Sixth Form College, Solihull (part of the Ninestiles Academy Trust) are celebrating on A level Results Day, having achieved the grades necessary to take up their offers from Oxbridge.

Three current students and one ex-student have been successful in their applications to the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge this year. Former Light Hall School students Kyaice Hendricks and Becky Fowler, as well as ex-Lode Heath School student Nick Delaney have achieved top grades to secure their places.

Former Lode Heath School student Nick Delaney achieved all A* grades in A level German, Law and Russian. His university place is at Churchill College, Cambridge to study Asian and Middle Eastern Studies.

He commented:

“I’m really happy with my results. I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect, but I did feel nervous and I didn’t get much sleep last night. I’m looking forward to taking up my place. I’ve got a year abroad to look forward to, which I will be spending in China and that’s really exciting. I’m not 100% sure what I want to do as a career yet, but studying languages will keep lots of doors open for me.

“Making an application to Cambridge was intense. There was so much to keep on top of with a separate entrance exam and work to be sent in. I was never sure if what I was giving them was good enough or what they were looking for. However, I visited the university and I had two mock interviews at College to prepare me, including one on the place with my teacher on the way back from my German exchange. You can never prepare for everything they will ask you, but that preparation was really helpful.”

For Kyaice Hendricks and Becky Fowler their university places are to study English at Mansfield College, Oxford. Kyaice all A and A* grades in A level English Language, English Literature, History and Mathematics, while Becky achieved all A* grades in English Literature, History and Psychology at A level.

Former Light Hall School student Kyaice explains why she chose to apply to Oxford and what challenges she faced:

“I was looking to study at the best university for English, but also the best university for me, and Oxford ticked all of those boxes. Before I made my decision to apply I went to two open days and spoke to tutors and students, and felt that I would be able to thrive in the environment. Another factor that helped me make my decision was talking to an English Tutor from Oxford who came to a college event. She explained the application process and what life at Oxford was like – it all really appealed to me, and the fact that Oxford is an excellent university was a bonus. The biggest challenge with the application was balancing it with my other college work. I think it is really easy to get distracted by the process and devote all of your time to preparing for the admissions test or interview, forgetting that a-levels are still taking place.”

Becky, also a former student from Light Hall School, explains her motivation in making an Oxbridge application:

“I have always wanted to study at Oxford, as it is a beautiful city and renowned university, being rated the top for English Literature. Oxford also has the Bodleian Library, which has a copy of every book ever published! I also find the Oxbridge method of teaching interesting; being taught in tutorials (consists of a couple of students with the tutor) that allow more personal discussion with the tutor. I thought it was worth attempting (an application) since all universities cost the same now anyway, so it was worth going for the best!”

Our successful Oxbridge students have good advice for future students who are thinking about making an Oxbridge application. Nick Delaney says:

“When it comes to the interview, try to enjoy it! If you’re passionate about the subject you’re applying for, show it! If you’ve been chosen for interview, it shows they believe you may thrive at the university, so show them that you’re passionate and eager to learn. Don’t worry too much about wrong answers. I got some interview questions quite wrong, but by asking questions yourself and discussing the answers you give, you can show off what you do know. And above all, good luck!”

This advice is echoed by Becky Fowler, who says:

“Definitely give it a go and stay positive, you’re as good as anyone else entering, whether they’re from private or grammar school or not. Also, make sure you don’t do it alone, and ask for help from your teachers, family and friends for support.”

As well as this gifted trio, a former student (Roma) is also heading for Oxbridge. Roma left the College last summer with all A and A* grades and has an unconditional offer to study History at Mansfield College, Oxford.

College Principal Martin Sullivan offers his congratulations to these students:

“This is fantastic news and I congratulate all four students on their results. Even making the application will have been a daunting challenge, in which they put themselves up against not only the best students in the UK, but from abroad too. Everyone who attempts it gains valuable life experience, which will stand them in good stead for the future. For these four successful students, we wish them the best of luck when they take up their place later in the year.”

The College has a great track record for supporting students to get Oxbridge places. Last year, all nine students with offers took up their places and since 2010, 41 students have progressed to Oxford and Cambridge.

16 August 2018