FAQ's about Universities

Why did you choose Cambridge over Oxford?

The main reason is because of funding. Colleges with larger endowments generally have more money to give their students and cheaper rent and food. I just went on the Wikipedia page for both Oxford colleges and Cambridge colleges, sorted the colleges by their financial endowment, and then looked extensively on their websites about which opportunities would be available to me had I applied to that specific college. Turned out at St. John's, Cambridge had the most funding and opportunities available to me (despite Trinity College, Cambridge being the richest), but this may have changed this I applied.

To give you an idea, because of my low household income, I get £10.6k / year in bursaries from St. John's College (Cambridge) and the university. I maxed out my maintenance loan from Student Finance at £9k / year, totalling £19.6k / year. This has meant that I've never had to ask my parents for rent, food, going out, or anything else.

There were many other opportunities at St. John's College, such as an exchange programme to Japan which I attended and the Learning and Research fund (each student gets £900 / year across all three years to spend on books, research, or technology).

Ultimately, I would highly recommend looking at the college websites and seeing what opportunities would be available for you if you attend that college. I kept track of this research with a Google Doc.

Why did you choose St. John's College, Cambridge specifically?

See the answer above.

Why did you pick Natural Sciences at Cambridge over straight Physics at Oxford?

See the answer above.