Application

 Cambridge

 Downing

 Medicine

 2007

 rejected

Applicant

 ‘Asian’ A-levels

 pre-qualification

 home

 Pakistan

 Comprehensive School

and then a sixth form catholic college

 yes (5 A*,5 A,2 B)

‘Asian’ A-levels

(predicted A; gained NA)

(predicted A; gained NA)

(predicted A; gained NA)

and AS Level Psychology (A)

Other universities

no

Decisions about the application

come on .. its Oxbridge 😀 .. who wouldnt

i went on the cambridge open day and its absolutely BEAUTIFUL.. i loved it
im a quite reserved person and it fitted me perfectly.. the course itself is very traditional consisting of lecture style learning – which is the way i have been taught most of my life (teacher standing in front of the classroom).

Medicine is something i wanted to do since quite a while.. You save people’s lives – get paid quite a hefty sum for it 😀 .. and its not a boring job either. It involves constantly facing challenges , quick decisions, constant learning and meeting new people everyday which is exactly what i want in a career. There’s only 1 GOD thats for sure, but if someone has the knowledge and ability to save a person’s life – regardless of their ethnicity, race, gender colour etc then i guess thats nothign less.

I wanted to apply to Emmanuel to be honest.. but then i heard its the most competitive college in Cambridge and i knew i wouldnt stand a chance. So the next best thing was Downing 🙂 .. when i went i liked the accomodation, the whole layout of the college and it had great sports facilities too. The location is ideal near the centre of the town.

Preparation

yes

We had an Oxbridge group where teachers helped us with our personal statements (grammar and spell check) and gave us 1 mock interview prior to the real one. However it was NOTHING like the Oxbridge interview (which i found out too late).

Medicine interviews at DOWNING are not like your usual interview. They do not ask persoanl questions like why do you want to do medicine – what abilities do ou posess etc etc. They ask strictly scientific questions based on your ALevel Knowledge. (However this dosent mean they wont slip a sly one in her or there)
I guess the best advice i can give is know your syllabus INSIDE OUT 🙂

Interview

yes

BMAT

no

no

there are two interviews …
which were AWFUL .. i knew NOTHING at all .. they askd me on AS knowledge of biology and chemistry which we did at teh start of the year – which i had learnt and forgotton. They askd me on combustion of propane which is so EASY but i just couldnt remember what combustion was – yeah i know how stupid. He just looked at me and went ” So let me get this right – u dont know what combustion is?” :S
I felt so dumb – each time i didnt know anything i just sat there and grinned 😀 .. LOL !!!!

asked me about Born Haber Cycle.. Combustion.. Test for Aldehydes and Ketones and the chemical reactions involved
I wrote about autism in my personal statement so they asked me about the SALLY ANNE test in psychology.. how blood is deliverd to a foetus.. Greenhouse effect and global warming.. Microwaves and Radiation – what that has to do with Medicine still puzzles me to this day :S .. ermm oh yeah and gas exchange in a foetus (again)

I wore smart black trousers .. heels 😀 .. it was winter so a jumper style polo neck.. minimal make up .. no jewellry

Impressions

gorgeous 🙂

downing has good accomodation – the best i saw of the colleges i visited anyway .. at a decent price too

catered halls or they had same rooms which shared a kitchen between the rooms on the whole floor

They seemd okay 2bh .. the tutors int he firts interview were telling me about a ocllege in America which had the same name as my college :S
but in the second one .. he lost his temper becoz i got the microwaves question wrong .. and was just sitting there grinning when he asked me what the answer was ..
Man i messed up BIG time

college student are NORMAL .. lolll
there was this one guy who had about a hundred peircings, hair dyed red and green .. God knows how he got in 😛

Final stage

Awful .. i knew i messd it up .. but i still had a little bit of hope becoz i applied through the access scheme and thought maybe .. hey might hav liked me :S ..
That week i couldnt get to sleep all night..

the letter was realli thin and i knew i hadnt got in .. when i opened it i couldnt stop smiling and when i told my family they were just shocked looking at me.. i was proper hyper that day but then that night i just cried and cried (obviously) .. i guess i found out how much i realli wanted to get in

Looking back

NO.. Definitely not
Cambridge messed up my whole application – i changed my personal statement and everything so it sounded educational and scientific just so i got an interview .. however it meant i didnt get an interview from anywhere else becoz it lacked emotion and description 🙁

They really do want very very clever people – especially for a field such as medicine .. so if your not quick on your feet and dont know the syllabus inside out (that includes every tiny little detail) dont bother applying
We can do better .. At the end of the day your all guna becum doctors so Hu carez whether its frm Cambridge or a normal univeristy.
At a nromal university you will have a GREAT social life and better communication skills than them oxbridge people 🙂
good luck