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History paves way for Cambridge journeys

Two Leicester teenagers will be living their dreams of studying at one of the UK’s top universities.

Former WQE students Bijal Daialal 18 and Imran Mulla, 18 are due to begin studying History degrees at the University of Cambridge this October, after achieving top marks in their A-levels.

Bijal completed A-levels in History, Literature and Politics with grades A*, A and A, while Imran completed A-levels in History, Economics, English Literature with grades A*, A* and A; securing their places at the prestigious university.

Ambition and passion have been the motivation behind their success. Bijal and Imran maximised the opportunities available to them by signing up to the college’s Oxbridge workshops. Run by the WQE Careers team, the workshops took place throughout the academic year, providing guidance to students on how to submit applications to Oxford and Cambridge universities. Students were also able to seek valuable advice from their teachers and representatives of each university.

Confident about the transition to higher education, Imran feels very well prepared for this next stage. He said: “I had a great time at WQE. My History teachers were incredibly helpful in assisting me with my application to university and they were clearly committed to getting us the best grades possible, as was made obvious by the high quality of lessons.

“A-level is a dramatic step-up from the world of GCSEs, and in that way provides the necessary bridge to university.”

Likewise, Bijal is excited to begin the journey to specialising in a subject that she’s passionate about. She said: “From the start, I knew that I wanted to study either English or History at a higher level. I am beyond thrilled to be able to pursue my interests in an institution that thrives in this discipline.”

Bijal’s interest in History grew as she progressed through college.

She said: “History coursework especially, assisted my decision to continue in this discipline.  The experience of investigating a complex topic independently was both challenging and rewarding and enhanced my skills of critical thinking, judgement formation and devising comprehensive arguments. Practically, it refined my skills of sophisticated academic writing and ability to argue confidently – I feel this has all prepared me for university.”

As she prepares for her studies at Cambridge, Bijal is grateful to those who supported her in pursuing her passion.

“Some of my teachers particularly deserve praise for teaching the course in an engaging and thought-provoking manner and for the extra support they offered both academically and beyond. I am also extremely grateful for all the valuable support my History teacher, provided throughout my entire Cambridge application and for encouraging my interest in the subject.”

For current students looking to pursue a similar path, Bijal advises: “Try your level best, even in your first year and be nice to your teachers because you apply to university with the predicted grades that they give you. Focus equally on exam technique like how to structure your answers, how to meet the assessment objectives and writing to time as well as on learning the content to ace your exams.”

This year WQE celebrated an A-level success rate of 98.3% across subject areas, with 13 students securing places at Oxford and Cambridge universities. An additional 22 students have been accepted onto dentistry and medicine courses at institutions throughout the country.

Catherine Brett, Curriculum Area Lead for Humanities at WQE said: “It’s been a delight to teach these impressive young people and do our bit to help them aim high and achieve their goals. They richly deserve these opportunities and we are so proud of them.”

To find out more about A-level courses at WQE, visit www.wqe.ac.uk/course and for information about Oxbridge workshops, contact careers@wqe.ac.uk.


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