Ellie Jones writes for Durham University’s Palatinate on why she is happy she didn’t get into Oxford:
Oxford or Cambridge?’ is always one of the first questions freshers at Durham ask each other in the first week of term. Someone once jokingly (I hope) asked before asking my name. For me it was Oxford, Brasenose College.
Following the sting of rejection this time last year, I allowed myself to be reassured by the regurgitated newspaper articles that spouted statistics and stories about other failed Oxbridge applicants and argued that this year had been more competitive than ever due to rising fees, fewer people taking a gap year and increasingly high academic standards. Numerous excuses on my behalf flooded automatically from friends and family. On hearing the news, they would shake their heads and say ‘Well it’s not the end of the world’ or something similar, their overly sympathetic expressions and hopeless sighs indicating that they thought otherwise while even my parents fretted that I would forever define myself as an Oxbridge reject.
One particularly blunt family friend even added at the end of yet another round of reassurances “But it does open doors you know…” Well, thanks. Clearly all the doors are closed now. Slammed in my face by one automated email.
Full article here.