The recent trip to New College, Oxford, allowed students like myself to have the opportunity to see the college and city of Oxford, as well as find out more about the university itself. I found it extremely useful to be able to ask questions to the students, and understand the truth behind some of the misconceptions about Oxford. We were shown a presentation about how learning and extra-curricula activities work there, and I was particularly interested in the music and drama opportunities that were available. We were told the way that lectures and personalised tutorial lessons worked, before being given our own tour of the college from a student, who studies Biology there. She was very encouraging and passionate about the university, and explained how many people believe that entry into Oxbridge is out of their reach, but in reality, through hard work it is, of course, achievable. There was also a part of the college that was used in filming Harry Potter which we saw, and a staircase in the gardens which squeaked when you clapped! The student also described some of the weird and wonderful traditions in each of the colleges, and how they can chose to buy a hot meal cooked in the kitchens of each college, which we all got to enjoy at lunchtime.
After lunch there was time to explore Oxford to see first hand the atmosphere of the city, busy with students cycling to libraries and lectures. We got to see the famous domed Bodleian Library which contains a copy of every book ever published in England, so extremely useful for History and English students at the university. However, there are dozens of libraries and departments for each subject as Oxford really is a city suited for student life, but is still full of history and culture. Overall, I found the trip very interesting, I liked the college itself and the city of Oxford. A chance to look at the courses offered was also useful to all of us who visited. The prospect and requirements for the university seemed daunting at first, but a chance to talk with students and experience the city allowed us to understand that Oxford could well be the place where we choose to study in two years’ time.
By Orla, year 12