A PAIR of Sunderland students got a taste of what life has to offer at one of the country’s top universities.
Jessica Hall and Adam Young, first year A-level students, got the chance to see what is in store for Cambridge undergraduates after winning places on the 2013 Cambridge University Students’ Union (CUSU) Shadowing Scheme.
Jessica, 16, a student at St Robert of Newminster RC Sixth Form College in Washington, and Adam, 17, who studies at Sunderland College, were teamed up with students from Christ’s College and Trinity Hall, attending lectures, supervisions and social events.
The Shadowing Scheme is organised each year by CUSU to give bright young people from non-university backgrounds the opportunity to experience life at a top university. This year was the biggest yet, with 370 students taking part across three weeks.
Both Sunderland students enjoyed their taste of life as Cambridge undergraduates and discovered new things about the university.
Jessica, who is interested in studying physics, said: “I had thought that Cambridge was all about academia, but there’s lots to do outside of studying.
“All of the people were friendly and welcoming.”
Adam, who would like to study medicine, wanted to take part in the Shadowing Scheme to get an idea of what Cambridge is really like.
He said: “I was worried that I wouldn’t fit in, but the students and staff were very friendly. The students do work hard, but they play hard too.”
Vicky Hudson, access officer for CUSU and one of the organisers of this year’s scheme, said: “I am passionate about the Shadowing Scheme because it gives students a chance to get past the stereotypes and find out for themselves what Cambridge is like.”
She added: “One of the great things about going to Cambridge is that you meet a range of different people from all kinds of backgrounds and study the subject you love with other people who love it too.”
Priority for places on the Shadowing Scheme is given to young people with a strong academic track record but who attend schools with little experience of sending students to Cambridge or Oxford and who have few family members with experience of higher education.