The Oxford and Cambridge Project
16. Studying Natural Sciences with Ilya’s Cambridge Advice

16. Studying Natural Sciences with Ilya’s Cambridge Advice

April 4, 2021

Today we chat with Ilya, a 3rd year at Jesus College, studying Biological Natural Sciences (aka Nat Sci). If you're thinking about applying to Cambridge, you should definitely check out his Youtube channel - Ilya’s Cambridge Advice - on which he gives great and concise application advice to the university. We sit down and get to know more on his daily life at Cambridge, his study methods, and how COVID affected his final year of undergraduate.


00:00 Intro

00:37 Background

01:49 Quickfire round

05:04 Nat Sci application

07:39 Interview day at Jesus

08:26 3rd Year in Nat Sci

09:54 Adapting to remote learning

11:14 Strategies to get a First

13:28 Exams during COVID

14:44 Nat Sci exams: maths vs. essay-based

16:54 Jesus College

19:20 Jesus May Ball

20:08 How to find your best study spot?

22:54 Making time for (lots of) extra curriculars

26:56 Youtube Journey

30:04 Happiest memory: a morning in May Week

32:25 Biggest regrets

33:59 Tips for future students

*Note: this episode was filmed back in February*


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15. May Vet Student discusses studying VetMed at Cambridge!

15. May Vet Student discusses studying VetMed at Cambridge!

February 27, 2021

Today we are hosting May Vet Student on our podcast! May Yean is currently in her final year of studying Veterinary Science at Cambridge University. She grew up in Malaysia and matriculated in 2015 at Girton College. In her 6th year in Cambridge, she started a Youtube channel to give others an insight into her life as a vet student, as well as share educational videos and productivity tips.



00:00 Intro

01:46 Quickfire round

03:59 Background

06:26 Open application

07:55 Interviewing in Malaysia

09:24 Interview prep: mock interviews

10:38 Choosing to become a Vet

11:54 What's included in VetMed at Cambridge?

14:49 3rd Year Research Project

16:03 Workload for VetMeds

16:59 Structure & assessments

20:27 Favourite part of the course

21:47 Do you need a car?

23:47 #COVID19 impacts

25:50 Postgrad accommodation

27:05 Friendships between vets

31:43 Getting help for mental health

34:12 Favourite memory from Cambridge

35:31 Benefits of a 6 year course for extra curriculars

38:22 Biggest regrets at Cambridge

40:50 Resitting a year or intermitting

42:57 Girton College life as an undergrad and postgrad

46:32 Diversity in VetMed

47:58 Mentorship platform


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14. Everybody wants to be at Catz

14. Everybody wants to be at Catz

February 20, 2021

This week we have Alex Denny with us. Alex recently graduated from St Catharine's College, (or as students affectionately call it: Catz) with a degree in Archaeology. He tells us about why he chose this course, shares his love for the college, discusses his busy university schedule, and debates the merits of May Week with us from the experience of living with a student bursary. Alex has secured a training contract with the firm Allen & Overy and is currently doing his PGDL in London.

13. Cambridge Economics 101

13. Cambridge Economics 101

February 13, 2021

Today Opportune speaks to Krishna Ramesh! Krishna graduated with a bachelors’ degree in economics from Cambridge in 2016, and with a masters’ degree from Yale in 2017. He tells us all about Downing College, the structure of the econ course and his career in international development. He also shares tips for future applicants and current students.

12. Life of a 4th year Cambridge Medic

12. Life of a 4th year Cambridge Medic

February 6, 2021

This week we speak to Claudia Tam. Claudia is a current 4th year student at St Johns College, reading Medicine. She tells us about life in Cambridge during #COVID, her undegrad and clinical years as a medic, and her role as President of the Cambridge University Amateur Boxing Club. Claudia has also tutored high school students in Oxbridge interview prep and shares some great tips for future applicants!



00:00 Intro

01:38 Background

02:28 Taking the decision to study medicine

04:16 #1 Tip before interviewing for Oxbridge

06:20 Interview advice from a tutor

07:59 Interview day

09:11 St John's College

11:22 Choosing your college for medicine

12:23 Postgraduate accomodation

13:37 Diversity in medicine

14:59 Intercollated 3rd year for medics

15:57 Medic workload 16:57 COVID and exams

18:58 Clinical Years at Cambridge

25:00 Cambridge University Boxing Club

29:20 "The First, the Blue, the Spouse"

30:24 Joining boxing as a beginner

33:09 Having extra-curriculars at Cambridge

34:58 Happiest memories at Cambridge

36:31 BA/MA Graduations

37:18 St. John's May Ball

37:50 Tips for future students


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11. Meet the Engineer who hadn’t heard of Cambridge University before applying

11. Meet the Engineer who hadn’t heard of Cambridge University before applying

January 23, 2021

This week Opportune speaks to Areeg Emarah. Areeg grew up in Kenya and had never heard of Cambridge before her final year of high school, when her head master suggested she apply! She is now in her 4th year, studying Information and Computer Engineering at Trinity College. Areeg speaks about her incredible journey moving to Cambridge, adapting to life and labels (and now #COVID), and developing her passion of increasing access to the University.



00:00 Intro

03:11 Growing up in Kenya

07:20 A crash course on Cambridge

09:55 Showing your passion in your application

12:35 Interview day

17:32 Being apprehensive about your place at Cambridge

19:55 Freshers Week

24:19 Trinity College

26:59 Engineering

33:03 Does Engineering have to be 4 years?

35:50 Cambridge during COVID

41:14 Pushing for access to Cambridge

42:25 CUSU Shadowing Scheme

43:24 CUES Access Officer

46:25 Beacon Scholarship

46:50 May Week Alternative

52:15 Happiest memory

53:08 Important things to remember


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10. Perspectives of an International Student at Cambridge University

10. Perspectives of an International Student at Cambridge University

January 15, 2021

Happy New Year! For this first video of 2021, Opportune speaks to Borane Gille, a Girton College graduate, who received a 1st class degree in Land Economy in 2018. Borane speaks to us about adapting to the Cambridge life as an international student, leading sports and social societies, and shares lots of tips for doing your best in exams.

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00:00 Intro

01:36 Growing up in Paris

05:01 Application process

08:15 Interview process

11:11 Adjusting to studies in a non-native language

14:09 The pooling process

17:38 Girton College

21:22 Adapting as an international fresher

23:30 Land Economy rhythm & stereotypes

26:39 Nightlife in Cambridge

30:06 Lectures vs Supervisions

33:19 Career options after Land Economy

36:33 Cambridge Career Service

40:33 Sports in College

43:34 Starting a French Society in College

45:24 Cambridge University French Society: open to everyone!

47:37 Diversity in Land Economy

48:34 Balancing responsibilities

50:45 Organisation tips for freshers

52:09 Exam term tips from a Scholar

57:17 Using revision lectures & examiners' reports

59:22 Any regrets?

01:01:11 Happiest memory from Cambridge

9. Life of The King’s Men at Cambridge University

9. Life of The King’s Men at Cambridge University

December 18, 2020

For this very Christmassy episode, Opportune chats to Seb Johns about all things music! Seb is a former member of the famous King's College Choir, and of the close-harmony group The King's Men. Seb graduated from Corpus Christi College in 2017 with a BA degree in Music, and talks about choral scholarships as well of sharing stories of his time at Cambridge.



00:00 Intro

02:38 Background

05:28 Application process & interviews

07:33 Choral Scholarships

14:47 Career after a Music Degree

16:44 Life in Cambridge at school vs at uni

17:37 Oxford or Cambridge?

18:41 Time management at Cambridge University

21:32 Favourite part of the course

22:47 Corpus Christi College

25:27 Corpus Clock

26:43 Choice of College: does it really matter?

30:55 Perks of the King's College Choir

33:20 Seb’s career path to teaching

35:05 Do Choral Scholars have to be religious?

37:06 Happiest day at Cambridge

38:42 May Balls' Survivors' Photo

39:35 Tips for Oxbridge applicants

44:12 Merry Christmas from The King’s Men!


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8. Joe Binder: Serial Entrepreneur at Cambridge University

8. Joe Binder: Serial Entrepreneur at Cambridge University

December 5, 2020

We're so excited to talk to Joe Binder this week! You may know Joe from his Cambridge vlogger days, from his strong Instagram & LinkedIn game, or from the #StudentsOfCambridge campaign he founded in 2014. In this episode, Joe talks candidly abut his time at university, the feeling of never fitting in Cambridge's mould, and the self belief he developed through paving his own path.



00:00 Intro

02:14 When Oxbridge feels out of reach

05:10 The pivotal moment that changed Joe's mindset

07:07 Application & interviews

10:15 Choosing your college

12:58 Proving yourself that you can make it

15:25 Freshers' Week: a lonely experience

20:26 Choosing your course

21:53 Favourite part of your course

23:17 Make your own path

25:03 On starting new projects at uni

29:16 Joe's Youtube journey

32:23 Balancing studies, social media and sleep

34:29 Fitzwilliam College & Hill Colleges

38:22 Students: start building your social media profile

40:56 Forget everything you think you know about networking

48:15 Tips for your past self


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7. Becoming an Influencer while at University

7. Becoming an Influencer while at University

November 28, 2020

This week we talk to Gina Jackson, who you may know under the Instagram name @GinaGoesTo! Gina graduated with a BA in Classics from Pembroke College in 2017. During her time at Cambridge, Gina started blogging and has grown to an audience of 50,000 followers. She tells us all about the highs and lows of university life, and also shares tips for anyone wishing to build a following as a student.


00:00 Intro
02:05 Background
03:18 Open days: discovering which college fits you
04:45 Why did you choose Classics?
06:03 Application process
07:20 Interview prep
09:08 Interview day
15:38 First year: exploring everything!
18:04 Classics course structure & workload
23:32 Favourite part of the course
25:55 Are you a good fit for Classics?
30:38 Pembroke College
33:21 Building a social media platform from university 
36:13 How has your degree prepared you for working life?
38:22 Perks of Pembroke
39:40 Pembroke College accommodation
42:44 Joining societies
44:26 Organising a May Ball
46:15 Balancing studies, social media and sleep
48:04 Choosing your priorities at the start of the year
49:50 Tips for managing the Cambridge pressure
52:26 Tips for building a social media presence
53:37 Biggest regret at uni
56:28 Happiest day at Cambridge
57:42 May Week memories

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