Woodhouse College
Alica Derome Rebecca Saul

Students earn record 18 Oxbridge offers

Dated: 1 February 2018

After a college best of 57 students progressing to the Oxbridge interview stage, 18 of our hard working scholars have managed to secure an offer to Oxford or Cambridge
Principal John Rubinstein who oversees the Oxbridge support network at Woodhouse was in high spirits.
"I’m so pleased with our record number of offers for Oxbridge places. We’ve also had our first ever offers (at least in living memory) for Art at Oxford and Music at Cambridge, so that’s a particular testament to the hard-working students and staff in those departments. On top of that – six offers in History, which is simply outstanding.
I’m also sad, of course, for our students who were very deserving but didn’t get an offer. Oxbridge is just the tip of the academic iceberg but it’s good to see that we have so many students that aim so high and often reach those heights.
We put a lot of effort into supporting students with their choices, whatever they are, and for Oxbridge we’ve done a lot of work in preparing them for their applications and interviews to make them as ready as we possibly can. We’ll keep improving on our Oxbridge support network and are aiming for at least 20 offers next year." 
Some of our successful oxbridge candidates shared the feelings about their offers... 
 Etien Jasonson
Student Etien Jasonson from Palmers Green was equally buoyant. He has an offer from Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, to study Human Social and Political Science (HSPS).
“Getting the offer validated all the work and time I’ve put towards my work since year 11. It tremendously boosted my self-esteem. For my parents it’s been a really big issue. I think they see it as a confirmation that they’ve done well in raising me. My dad, who grew up in and around relative poverty in Wales, never really considered uni and I think for him this was a test of the lasting influence he’s had on me as a parent and the kind of attitude to learning and inquiry he’s fostered in me which he never received growing up.
I’m fairly sure I want to work for an international organisation or institution of some kind, such as a role in the EU, UN, Amnesty or a charity… anything which brings around meaningful and positive change. I certainly won’t be going into finance and banking…”
 Sophie Marlow has an offer from Exeter College, Oxford to study Biochemistry.
“On the day that decisions were being released I saw an email come through and I was reluctant to open it. I decided to wait until my mocks were over to know the decision as I wanted to focus on them. I went home and opened the email with my parents and we were all absolutely ecstatic, and none of us could believe it.
Neither of my parents went to university, but despite this were extremely supportive throughout the process, along with my teachers, to get through the most stressful parts of the application, namely the interview. The college has been a great support throughout the application process, but it was definitely intense.
After doing a biochemistry degree, I hope to do a PhD and go into research.”
 Eden Maddix Odeniyi
Eden Maddix Odeniyihas an offer from Homerton College, University of Cambridge to study History Tripos.
"It is absolutely amazing to receive an offer from Cambridge. My family are very proud and excited for me - as am I for myself. I think the offer really makes you feel like all of your hard work and stress during the application process has been appreciated and finally paid off.”
  Venetia McNally
For Venetia McNally, the road to her offer from Clare College, Cambridge to study Law has been a difficult personal journey.
"I'm so happy to get an offer and really excited with the prospect of going to Cambridge, although initially I was in shock. For me it means that I am one step closer to achieving what I have always wanted.
I have encountered obstacles within my personal life that have at times caused me to doubt whether I have the mental capacity and resilience to get an offer. However, my mum’s death spurred me on and education provided an escape from problems I suffered with and it fills me with joy when I meet people that my mum knew, and they say that she would be so proud of me.
My obstacles are also my motivation that inspire and encourage me to continue and without them, I don’t think I would be presented the chance with fulfilling my dream and studying at Cambridge. I hope to become a successful barrister possibly within the criminal field who is able to help wronged people get justice."
 Rebeka Shipkolye has an offer to read Law at Oxford.
“When I received my offer, I hadn’t heard back from my other choices, so I felt grateful and somewhat shocked. It was a very rewarding experience, knowing that all the hard work I had done had paid off.
Despite achieving academically, my former school did not have much experience with Oxbridge, and so whilst I was provided with a great foundation for further A level education, Woodhouse College seemed more informed and had a greater rapport with the universities I aspired to go to.
I hope to become a barrister, and ideally work in politics.”
 Seb Sacchi Wilson has an offer from Oxford to study History and Politics.
“I feel relieved, proud and excited to get my offer. The application process was difficult, especially the interview process which for me involved spending three nights in Oxford with interviews at two different colleges.
Ultimately, I want to work in politics, possibly to do with party strategy.”
Xhesika Gjoca has an offer from King’s College, Cambridge to study Law.
“Getting the offer was a shock at first, but it was a relief also. My parents left a war-torn country to offer me the best life they could. They’ve always valued the importance of education and have always put my education first and pushed me to do my best. Getting this offer feels like me repaying them for all the sacrifices they have made for me. It means a lot. I’m going to be the first person to go to university in the UK in my family.”
Ninon Lack has an offer from St Catherine’s, Oxford to study Human Sciences.
“Getting an offer is really surprising but lovely. I’ve been severely ill and have been in and out of hospital throughout my schooling, and it’s really nice to know that universities don’t always subscribe to pervasive mental health stigma and are able to differentiate a person’s ability from their illness.
I also am indebted to all the support and understanding Woodhouse has given me, without which I would never have even considered applying for Oxbridge, let alone got an offer.
I hope to specialise in evolutionary genetics or environmental conservation.”
 Orli Vogt-Vincent
Orli Vogt-Vincent, 18 from East Finchley has an offer to study History & Modern Languages at Emmanuel College, Cambridge.
“I was convinced I wouldn’t get a place, so I’m over the moon! It’s a dream come true for me.
Getting a place feels particularly amazing because before I came to Woodhouse, I would never have put myself forward for anything like this, as I never thought I could be good enough. I completely lost my confidence at secondary school, but Woodhouse has brought it back.
I don’t know yet what I want to do after university, but I’d love to work in the news or in politics, possibly liaising between politicians in Germany and the UK, something we’ll probably need after Brexit”
Issy Darlington has an offer from Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford to study Physics.
“After all the stress and work of the last few months, I am very pleased to have been given an offer. My family were very emotional and happy for me. It is an amazing opportunity.
Both my parents went to Oxford University - that’s where they met!
I am very proud of the fact I applied and went through the whole process which can be very anxiety provoking. It's scary being out of your comfort zone but I'm very pleased I did push myself.
I hope to do an integrated masters at Oxford. In my fourth year I hope to study the "Maths and Theoretical Physics" master's course that they offer as a continuation of the physics degree. After that I'd like to do a Phd and possibly go in to research.”
Yuhong Wang
 Art student Yuhong Wang has an offer to study Fine Art at the Ruskin School of Art, Oxford University, but is not yet sure if it what she wants...
“How do I feel about my offer? Normal… happy.
But I’m also very aware that there are other excellent art students here at Woodhouse who did not get an offer or even apply to Oxford. It’s great to have this amazing opportunity but I have very mixed feelings and am not actually not sure whether I want to go straight to university next year…
The usual route to a degree is to study Art Foundation first and I was quite looking forward to that chance to develop a bit both as an artist and personally… I may have a big decision to make later this year.
Woodhouse Art department have been extremely supportive in terms of advice for preparing my portfolio and the Head of Art, Ms Farquharson is so experienced and knowledgeable in Art - my thanks to all the staff who have helped me so much."

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