HELP! Should i go to Newnham? Watch

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bandeauballet
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I've been made an offer (through the pool) to study NatSci at Newnham but I don't know whether to accept or not. I went to an all girls school until sixth form and wasn't happy there. Then I moved to a mixed sixth form and i really like the mixed environment.
I stayed at Newnham the night before my interview and I tried to approach the college with an open mind. But the food was gross and expensive, my room was so cold I had to sleep in my coat, the nearest bathroom had paint peeling off the wall and mould growing in its place etc. There was a 'coffee party for interviewees in JCR' notice up in the evening, so I walked into the JCR to find about ten people sitting around the room not talking to each other at all, politely passing round a box of biscuits. 'Biscuit?' 'Er..no thanks' non-conversation going on. I assumed that these were all just REALLY nervous candidates so I picked out two girls talking to themselves who seemed older so must be students and started asking them about Newnham. They were really cool and friendly, and they said Newnham was 'ok'. They said they'd had difficulty deciding too...'Maybe I SHOULD have gone to UCL...Mmm' They said you really have to WORK for a social life which is a bit worrying.
Then at about 8pm all the other candidates left me to go and read New Scientist or Biology Review or whatever alone in their rooms. I then realised that some of the girls who'd just been sitting there not talking AT ALL were actually Newnham students.
The next day I had an interview with a transvestite, which is all fine but was a surprise. Both interviewers didn't seem interested in my answers and kept looking round the room. But somehow they gave me a place?!
I think Natural Sciences is a brilliant course and the teaching etc will probly be excellent but will I survive Newnham? Should I accept?
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covered farm wagon
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I would take the offer myself. And then, about some of the things you mentioned like paint falling off and bad heating, when you get there, COMPLAIN. Lots. And get it fixed. I don't know if this will work but they can't let you freeze. As for the quiet students... I'm sure they can't all be like that. There will be lots of people in your situation cos apparantly the all-girl colleges take pooled applicants for quite a few subjects so not everyone there will have wanted to go there necessarily. You'll meet people outside your college too I'm sure so there'll be lots of opportunity to make friends. When I first applied, I imagined being pooled to a girls college being a nightmare (I really like men)... but now I would be so happy if any college took me.... never mind.
Best of luck with whatever you decide.
Emma
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fred86
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(Original post by bandeauballet)
I've been made an offer (through the pool) to study NatSci at Newnham but I don't know whether to accept or not. I went to an all girls school until sixth form and wasn't happy there. Then I moved to a mixed sixth form and i really like the mixed environment.
I stayed at Newnham the night before my interview and I tried to approach the college with an open mind. But the food was gross and expensive, my room was so cold I had to sleep in my coat, the nearest bathroom had paint peeling off the wall and mould growing in its place etc. There was a 'coffee party for interviewees in JCR' notice up in the evening, so I walked into the JCR to find about ten people sitting around the room not talking to each other at all, politely passing round a box of biscuits. 'Biscuit?' 'Er..no thanks' non-conversation going on. I assumed that these were all just REALLY nervous candidates so I picked out two girls talking to themselves who seemed older so must be students and started asking them about Newnham. They were really cool and friendly, and they said Newnham was 'ok'. They said they'd had difficulty deciding too...'Maybe I SHOULD have gone to UCL...Mmm' They said you really have to WORK for a social life which is a bit worrying.
Then at about 8pm all the other candidates left me to go and read New Scientist or Biology Review or whatever alone in their rooms. I then realised that some of the girls who'd just been sitting there not talking AT ALL were actually Newnham students.
The next day I had an interview with a transvestite, which is all fine but was a surprise. Both interviewers didn't seem interested in my answers and kept looking round the room. But somehow they gave me a place?!
I think Natural Sciences is a brilliant course and the teaching etc will probly be excellent but will I survive Newnham? Should I accept?
just pm'd u
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katiyakat
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I have the same dilemma (makes at least 3 of us on this board)! Was made an offer by Newnham through the pool and now have to decide between there and Durham. You're one step ahead of me though - I haven't actually visited the college yet.

Are you going to take the offer Fred or are you unsure too?
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starry
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(Original post by katiyakat)
I have the same dilemma (makes at least 3 of us on this board)! Was made an offer by Newnham through the pool and now have to decide between there and Durham. You're one step ahead of me though - I haven't actually visited the college yet.

Are you going to take the offer Fred or are you unsure too?
I like durham
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katiyakat
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I love Durham . (Only been there once but I really did love it!)
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as1
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Durham is a totally fab uni. One of my best friends is there. She goes to Trevelyan, but I must admit I was impressed by Castle College.

You have to make a decision between Subject and College. Presumably you will have slightly better teaching/resources etc. at Cam, but the social life at a mixed college in Durham is likely to be more exciting. I'd rank each element and start to build a picture from there.

Or force yourself to say that you are going to drop Cam - go visit Durham or look through the website. Gear yourself up to going and see how you feel... if you suddenly have a feeling of loss or keep thinking about CAM then perhaps Newnham will be ok for you. After all, you'll meet guys on your course and at uni-wide societies.

Andrew
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Weirdo
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I'd take the offer... I was in an all-girls school up till sixth-form too (and hated it). I like the school I'm in now, and would never even think about putting my kids through the torture of an all-boys/all-girls school, but uni is different! Your lectures will be mixed, you'll meet guys around the town, and the only time you'll really spend in the college is when you're revising, or attending seminars.

I know Oxbridge isn't everything (in term of social life, etc..), but getting into Cambridge is amazing, and it's only for 3/4 years of your life! You'll have guys swarming around the entrance to your college!
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*Joanna*
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(Original post by Weirdo)
I'd take the offer... I was in an all-girls school up till sixth-form too (and hated it). I like the school I'm in now, and would never even think about putting my kids through the torture of an all-boys/all-girls school, but uni is different! Your lectures will be mixed, you'll meet guys around the town, and the only time you'll really spend in the college is when you're revising, or attending seminars.

I know Oxbridge isn't everything (in term of social life, etc..), but getting into Cambridge is amazing, and it's only for 3/4 years of your life! You'll have guys swarming around the entrance to your college!

and probably inside too... i can't remember who it was, but somebody told a rather amusing story about a fire drill at new hall or newnham at 2am and more lads emerged than girls....that made me laugh so much!

so i reckon go for it, you won't be with just girls all the time...good luck!
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Suzy_vet
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(Original post by bandeauballet)
I've been made an offer (through the pool) to study NatSci at Newnham but I don't know whether to accept or not. I went to an all girls school until sixth form and wasn't happy there. Then I moved to a mixed sixth form and i really like the mixed environment.
I stayed at Newnham the night before my interview and I tried to approach the college with an open mind. But the food was gross and expensive, my room was so cold I had to sleep in my coat, the nearest bathroom had paint peeling off the wall and mould growing in its place etc. There was a 'coffee party for interviewees in JCR' notice up in the evening, so I walked into the JCR to find about ten people sitting around the room not talking to each other at all, politely passing round a box of biscuits. 'Biscuit?' 'Er..no thanks' non-conversation going on. I assumed that these were all just REALLY nervous candidates so I picked out two girls talking to themselves who seemed older so must be students and started asking them about Newnham. They were really cool and friendly, and they said Newnham was 'ok'. They said they'd had difficulty deciding too...'Maybe I SHOULD have gone to UCL...Mmm' They said you really have to WORK for a social life which is a bit worrying.
Then at about 8pm all the other candidates left me to go and read New Scientist or Biology Review or whatever alone in their rooms. I then realised that some of the girls who'd just been sitting there not talking AT ALL were actually Newnham students.
The next day I had an interview with a transvestite, which is all fine but was a surprise. Both interviewers didn't seem interested in my answers and kept looking round the room. But somehow they gave me a place?!
I think Natural Sciences is a brilliant course and the teaching etc will probly be excellent but will I survive Newnham? Should I accept?
Its a difficult one. Was it term time when you were there? if not, you have to think about the type of students who would hang around outside of term. Probably not the ones witht he best lifes. Your in the situation that everybody thinks about and rather dreads having to make a disision! Durhams cool, it might be better there.
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Jade
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(Original post by Suzy_vet)
Its a difficult one. Was it term time when you were there? if not, you have to think about the type of students who would hang around outside of term. Probably not the ones witht he best lifes. Your in the situation that everybody thinks about and rather dreads having to make a disision! Durhams cool, it might be better there.
Im in the same situation..got pooled to Newhall. But I am going to tale the place, it is an opportunity not to be wasted. Neway it is not as if there is going to be little interaction with menm..what red-blooded man would miss the chance to get to see the insides of all-feramle colleges..I bet the colleges are swarming with them!! Also Cam is a male dominated uni, so overall females are in the minority, you may also get better support from an all female college.. all in the same position at the end of the day, and Im sure you'll find friends who are exactly like you, and you'll have a great MIXED social life!! I hope!!
Jade x
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blissy
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TAKE IT!! I'm at New Hall and an all-female college poses no problem to your social life. All-female colleges are generally a lot friendlier and more homely. Newnham has the distinct advantage of being right next to the Sidgwick site (where you will have most of your lectures) and rolling out of bed 10 minutes before must be fab (I have to walk 20 minutes and it does make a small difference to your motivation). There are enough opportunities to join societies, to go to the union, during lectures, supervisions that you have outside of college etc. so meeting other people (esp. ones with the same interests) is really easy. All-Girls is great - in a lot of other colleges girls are really vicious towards one another and seem to be in direct competition. People will come and knock on your door and tell you to stop writing your essay and to go out and generally everyone is LOVELY! (beginning to waffle methinks). As for boys coming over - there are no rules at New Hall excpet that male visitors should be accompanied around college after 11pm so you can have male visitors all the time if you want to!

Take it, I was seriously considering another university and I'm so glad I chose Cambridge - it has everything you want and the employment opportunities afterwards are amazing!!
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fred86
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(Original post by blissy)
TAKE IT!! I'm at New Hall and an all-female college poses no problem to your social life. All-female colleges are generally a lot friendlier and more homely. Newnham has the distinct advantage of being right next to the Sidgwick site (where you will have most of your lectures) and rolling out of bed 10 minutes before must be fab (I have to walk 20 minutes and it does make a small difference to your motivation). There are enough opportunities to join societies, to go to the union, during lectures, supervisions that you have outside of college etc. so meeting other people (esp. ones with the same interests) is really easy. All-Girls is great - in a lot of other colleges girls are really vicious towards one another and seem to be in direct competition. People will come and knock on your door and tell you to stop writing your essay and to go out and generally everyone is LOVELY! (beginning to waffle methinks). As for boys coming over - there are no rules at New Hall excpet that male visitors should be accompanied around college after 11pm so you can have male visitors all the time if you want to!

Take it, I was seriously considering another university and I'm so glad I chose Cambridge - it has everything you want and the employment opportunities afterwards are amazing!!
thanks, that's really helpful -i've decided i'm going (grades provided!)
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blissy
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If I'd gone to the other uni I would have been kicking myself forever. Well DOne! Oh and I didn't get the right results (got AAC and was offered AAB but it was a close call) but they still decided to have me, so work hard by all means but make sure you have a good person to make a phone call on results day if needs be
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hildabeast
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(Original post by fred86)
thanks, that's really helpful -i've decided i'm going (grades provided!)
Excellent decision - well done!

Newnham is our sister college and I think it's fab; I'm sure you just saw its worst bits at a particularly bad time.

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naelse
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I'm really surprised that you had such a bad experience. I applied there in the first place and when I went for interview all the students that I met were really friendly and talkative and normal. I did have to wait in a cold, drab room, but I asked my interviewer about it and she said that those rooms weren't being used for students any more... I seem to have had a completely differerent impression of it from you! I guess what that shows is that there's never going to be just one particular type of people- there's people of every personality everywhere! If you'd met the people that I met, I'm very sure you would have fallen in love with it completely! I'm hopefully going to be there next year and i'm definitely nothing like the girls you described.
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Katie J
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Go to Newnham! I'm hopefully going (grades permitting...) & I'm not like the people you described, hope Im not at least! I did find the college cold, but I snooped about the room a bit & found a heater & plugged it in to a dodgy socket & spent the night worrying I was gonna burn the place down! All the students were really cool, I didn't go with any friends or family & as far as I was aware I was the only state school applicant there on that day so they made me feel really welcome! The food wasn't great from the buttery but I understand Newnham has good self catering stuff & even freezers! I didn't go to the coffee party because my train was cancelled and the second one delayed so arrived much later than I had intended, I wandered around but the deathly silence scared me & I ended up just reading over all the leaflets/prospecti/forms etc. I'm not bothered about the all girl thing, I go (and always have gone) to a mixed comprehensive, it will be an experience but hopefully not a bad one! As someone already said, you can only benefit from it study wise & there is no limits on bloke friends etc! I can't wait to start! (though worried about the AAA...)
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katiyakat
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I'm going to visit Newnham next Tuesday and will probably decide on the basis of that visit whether it's to be there or Newnham for me. Is it worth going for lunch or is the food so bad as to be missable?
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Helenia
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(Original post by blissy)
People will come and knock on your door and tell you to stop writing your essay and to go out
We do that too! We're lovely as well!

All-Girls is great - in a lot of other colleges girls are really vicious towards one another and seem to be in direct competition.
Again, not here I can't think of any girls who I really don't get on with, and my close friends are all great. And I still haven't heard of any of my male friends going to Newnham because they're on the pull, although I'm not denying they probably have men round there a lot.

Go to Newnham, everyone who's got offers; I'm sure you won't regret it. I'm just sticking up for my own college here!
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bandeauballet
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Thanks guys, all your advice has been very reassuring. I'm definitely going to accept my offer. I think I just had a random bad experience so I'm going to try and visit during term time and hopefully like what I see!
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