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The only way is Oxford: a new term begins for Anastasia

When Anastasia joined a sixth form college in Leicester, she had a goal in mind – one she’s had since the age of 7 – to study at the University of Oxford then pursue a career in Law.

Anastasia Abebreseh Dundure, 18, attended WQE College where she completed A-levels in French, History and Politics. This year, after achieving three A* grades and a B in Extended Project Qualification, she successfully secured her place at one of the UK’s top universities.

Hard work and determination fuelled her success. Anastasia maximised the opportunities available 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 representatives of each university.

As she progressed through college, Anastasia’s interest in her subjects grew.

She said: “French helped me expand my knowledge of the language to the level of comfortable fluency. History allowed me to develop my analytical and argumentative skills, helping me to organise and articulate myself better; this was extremely useful in the interview process. I made the most progress in Politics as I started off at a grade C in Year 12 and ended up being awarded an A* – this subject taught me that hard work pays off and motivated me to keep studying and not to give up. This is very helpful when studying Law.”

Excited to begin her new learning journey, Anastasia is grateful for those who supported her aspirations.

She said: “The teachers in my courses were always very encouraging and motivating. They constantly challenged me and provided a very stimulating learning experience. I also enjoyed the amount of independence that came with studying at WQE – although bearing the responsibility of managing my own studies was difficult at first, I believe that I settled in quite quickly.

As she prepares to begin her degree in Law with French at University of Oxford’s Magdalen College, Anastasia reminds current students: “Believe in yourself and never give up. I received quite a lot of pessimism and discouragement from others whenever I told them of my aspirations and you just have to block that out and keep pursuing what you want to.

“Another thing would be to revise, revise, revise! Treat every single test and exam as if it’s your main one. Don’t be too afraid to ask your teachers for help or to give them extra work – it’s your education at the end of your day and the result will equate to the amount of effort you put in. Having said that though, it’s important to not overexert yourself and work beyond your limits – mental health and looking after yourself is key to avoid burning out. A-levels are very tough but going through them with poor mental health will make them completely unbearable. Look after yourself and don’t beat yourself up for taking some time out for self-care.”

This year WQE College celebrated an A-level success rate of 98.3% across subjects 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.

Kate O’Farrell, Careers Education Manager at WQE College said: “It’s fantastic to hear that Anastasia will be taking up a well-earned place at Oxford this year. Well done! We’re always happy to support our students with a wide range of activities – from personal statements and mock interviews, to presentations from our colleagues at Oxford and Cambridge. We’re always delighted to see them succeeding and wish them all the best for the future.”

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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