When we turn up at 9.30am for a 10am registration and there’s already a queue of 20, we know we’re in for a good day. This year’s Target Oxbridge launch was our biggest ever, with 160 students (plus family entourages!) taking over a huge auditorium at Clifford Chance, our hosts for the day. Add in our Rare team and a select crew of Target Oxbridge alumni, and we were close to 220 people altogether.
After plying our candidates with biscuits and refreshments, Clifford Chance’s Aasha Tikoo opened the formal part of the day with a warm welcome and a reminder that law firms welcome high-achieving graduates from a broad range of subjects. Next up, our programme leader and founder Naomi Kellman explained the happy reason for the increased size of the cohort and gave some firm pointers on the importance of professionalism. This year, after a serious injection of funds from both Oxford and Cambridge, we were able to treble the number of students on the Target Oxbridge programme. The step up in sponsorship means both Oxford and Cambridge will now host an Easter residential, followed by a summer visit or residential. The residential courses give the students a taster of life at the universities, with university tutors teaching sessions, and the students experiencing the city.
Rare Candidate Coordinator Alexander Olive took to the stage to highlight the importance of developing your subject interest. Alex is fairly new to the Rare family, but laid down the law like a veteran - we had a number of students comment on how useful the presentation was for understanding the level of dedicated preparation required for personal statement writing. Following some more programme details from Naomi, our panel of Target Oxbridge alumni lined up to share their experiences of university. Target Oxbridge candidates then peppered the panel with questions for half an hour, followed by lunch and an informal networking session.
We are tremendously grateful to our host, Clifford Chance, to the alumni who volunteered their time to spend with our candidates, to our programme sponsors, the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, and to the families of the candidates who turned out in their droves to support their loved ones. This week, as we hold the first residential of this year’s programme, we’re excited to help another talented group of high achieving black students along the path to Oxbridge.
Find out more about why we created Target Oxbridge here.
Keywords: Target Oxbridge, Oxford, Cambridge