Loreto College has long built its reputation for providing excellent support for academically ambitious students who aspire to study at the most prestigious universities. This year 22 Loreto College students have received offers to study at the Oxbridge universities (pictured above).

From small beginnings over a decade ago, Dr Tony Lyons developed a model of support that provided a mixture of advice, guidance and challenge. This approach gave Loreto’s applicants the type of targeted support typically found only at independent schools, and quickly achieved correspondingly high levels of success.

Over time the team has expanded to continue and further develop the programme. Fran Tattersall now leads a multi-disciplinary team that provides expert support across the full range of courses offered by both Oxford and Cambridge universities. This year saw the expanded team surpass the milestone of their 100th student to receive an offer from either Oxford or Cambridge universities.

Ms Tattersall says, “Our job as a team is to support our students and help them to decide if studying at Oxbridge is a good fit for them.  Our aim is for students to find a place where they will flourish, studying a course they love.”

Loreto’s success has been hailed by the national press, with the sixth form college appearing in lists of the top UK state schools for Oxbridge entry. In a 2022 Daily Telegraph study Loreto College was ranked 8th. In subsequent years the proportion of applications that lead to offers has continued to exceed national averages.

What makes Loreto College distinct from other highly ranked schools and colleges is that comparable results are achieved without being highly selective. Loreto College is proud to support a diverse range of students. Every student who chooses to make an application is given one-to-one, tailored support, advice and guidance to maximise their chances of success.  Gregory, who has an offer to study Engineering at Cambridge, also adds, “When I came to Loreto, I wasn’t particularly sure whether Oxbridge would be for me, but being able to go to weekly extension sessions to prepare for admissions tests helped boost my confidence. I really appreciated all the extra support for interviews, especially the mock interview which was invaluable in helping me approach a Cambridge interview with the right mindset.”

Our alumni are also keen to get involved with supporting those who come after them, and they return to Loreto to offer advice and encouragement to those current students who are considering an application.  One of these students, Nicola, who now studies Biology at Oxford says, “Going to Oxford was not a path I ever saw myself taking, but with support and encouragement from Loreto, it was entirely the right choice for me. Now in my 4th Year, the Master’s, I am conducting fieldwork and writing my dissertation on an experiment which I first saw while at UNIQ Summer School here five years ago, which Loreto had advised me to apply to. Having had those opportunities to meet current students in the past, I appreciate the chance to come back to Loreto to hopefully show current students that you don’t have to have a certain background to find your place at Oxford”.

We wish all of our students every success in their preparations in the months ahead and look forward to celebrating their achievements on results day in August.

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