Introducing your Activities Directors

As we look ahead to the great activities we have planned for the next four weeks, we – your Activities Directors – wanted to introduce ourselves and whet your appetites by showing off some of last year’s highlights. From sports to cultural day trips,  or crafts to our famous final night ball, we’re here to make sure you all get the full Cambridge experience.

Both Ian and Shivani worked on the programme last year and we’re excited to be showing off the city we studied in to a new generation of CamTrad students!

Take a look at the fun we had last year and get excited. Can’t wait to see you all in a few days!

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The College Experience in Boston

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This year Oxbridge Academic Programs will inaugurate its program hosted at the Harvard Law School campus at Harvard University. Our staff will soon be moving into the campus to prepare an amazing summer for no doubt a fantastic group of students. The blog will showcase activities, class projects, guest lectures, sports, tours, and many more moments throughout the month.

If you have any questions, you may certainly contact our main office at +1-212-932-3049 or Info@oxbridgeprograms.com.

Beginning 6/21, you may directly contact the staff on The College Experience in Boston at +1-617-431-0196 or Boston@oxbridgeprograms.com.

Stay tuned for more information.

The Oxford Spring Seminar 2016!

Oxbridge Academic Programs’ inaugural Oxford Spring Seminar took place between March 20th and March 27th 2016 in Pembroke College. We combined the intensive, daily work involved in the major courses with a two-hour taster session of one other subject for all students; and we also offered a variety of evening talks, visits to sites of historical interest, recreational excursions, and a day-trip to London. It was an exceedingly busy week!

StudentsAs is the case on all our programs, we gave our students accommodation inside the College itself. They lived, ate, slept, and worked there, just as Oxford University undergraduates do during the academic year.

Our work on arrivals day began before dawn. Every student was met at the airport by a member of staff and escorted back to the University. With students coming from as far afield as Australia, Puerto Rico, and South Africa, it’s no exaggeration to describe our Spring Seminar as a global community. On that first day we went into town and climbed Carfax Tower, which is over 800 years old. This was the starting point for a tour of central Oxford, during which we saw the Bodleian Library and the Sheldonian Theatre.

 

MedThe outing was only a prelude to more detailed guided walks that took place later in the week. Dr. Michaelis unravelled the history of the University’s foundation as we explored the grounds and buildings of New College, and doctoral researcher Mihaela Mitrovic gave an entertaining architecture tour. She revealed the reasoning behind the design of Trinity College to our students, told them what was unique about the brickwork of Keble College as they admired the intriguing sunken lawns in Liddon Quad, and showed them Oxford’s modern side by interrogating the Investcorp Building at St Anthony’s College.

Oxbridge Academic Programs recognizes that young people are thinking about university applications ever earlier in their school careers. We seek to avoid increasing the stress that this trend has brought with it, while doing our utmost to help plan a calm, informed, and sensible approach to the process. To this end, we welcomed Anna Kotova, a lecturer and interviewer in Law for Oriel College, and David Pope, a town councillor and educational consultant with decades of experience helping students through the applications process, to talk about how to apply to Oxford. In a separate event, Dr. Berryman gave tips based on his own memories of interviewing candidates for music at the University of Cambridge. Our students also enjoyed a dynamic session on presentation skills with creative theatre expert Tanner Efinger.

SportsOxbridge Academic Programs always balances the intensive academic work involved in our courses with plenty of good fun. Our students enjoyed an evening at a quirky board-game café called Thirsty Meeples – the type of place one could only find in Oxford. They were entertained with an outing to local soccer team Oxford United too. Sadly OUFC could only muster a 1-1 tie against struggling Stevenage, but nevertheless, a good time was had by all. We also had a cinema night in one of Oxford’s old theatres, where we saw the blockbuster London Has Fallen. Our staff were greatly impressed by how quick the students were to bond and form new friendships with peers from across the world.

 

DiningOxford is famously filled with historical riches, and Oxbridge Academic Programs always ensures students are fully immersed in their surroundings. On the Spring Seminar, we had gripping guided tours of Blenheim Palace, the Divinty School, the Pitt Rivers Museum, the Ashmolean Museum, and various Colleges. We also had lunch in the Eagle and Child, the favourite watering-hole of C. S. Lewis, J. R. Tolkien, and their literary circle.

Our trip to London began with a tour of Shakespeare’s Globe on the South Bank. Our students were allowed some free time to explore the sights of the West End independently in small groups in the afternoon. In the evening, they saw Billy Elliot at the famous Victoria Palace, before a late private bus journey back to Pembroke.

 

BooksAll this was just complementary to the main thrust of the Spring Seminar – the major classes. These took place on six out of the seven days and were three-and-a-half hours each. Medicine was led by Dr. Predrag Bjelogrlic, genetics by Kenneth Hoehn, and world affairs by Rodrigo Moraes. Meanwhile minor classes were offered in Literature and Business.

Departures day rolled around all too quickly after a fantastic final banquet in Pembroke College Hall. Our staff were on hand from 4:30am to escort students to London for their return flights. The week seemed to have flown past, thanks not least to our participants’ energy and enthusiasm.

On the heels of this success, we are now turning our attention to our summer events. This year the range on offer is wider than ever in scope and ambition, and includes a completely new program in one of the world’s most famous universities – Harvard.

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Ave atque vale

As we finish packing up the Program Office that has been our base of operations for a month, we wanted to leave you with some final words from Greg:

Dear Families of the Cambridge Tradition —

Our final coach has departed for the airport and with heavy hearts we report that our program is now officially over.
Our month together finished in spectacular fashion. After final classes, students enjoyed a formal banquet, an awards assembly, and a masquerade ball complete with bouncy castles, chocolate fountains, and the usual bop. Midnight pizza was accompanied by a faculty rendition of ‘Please Don’t Go’,  a variation on ‘Let Them Go’ from the animated film Frozen, and a slide show featuring highlights from the program. In short, it was a typical day at the CamTrad.
Our first coaches left at 3.30 am and 12 hours later Jesus College has gone eerily silent; now we hear only the gentle soughing wind and the plaintive chimes of the chapel. The memories, however, remain intact. It’s impossible to recreate all that we have done together, but I trust that your sons and daughters — once they have rested – will fairly glow with tales of learning and discovery.
We in the staff and admin of the Cambridge Tradition would like to thank you all for sending us such impressive scholars and people. We encourage them to keep in touch, and we wish them the very best in their next adventures.
Sincerely —
Greg Gonzalez