Where will Cambridge Immerse take you?

Cambridge Immerse is an inspiring and transformative experience that can have a profound effect on the participants that join the programme. Many students tell us that Cambridge Immerse helped them gain a clearer understanding of what they wanted to study and where they hoped to be. With many of our students going on to top universities both here and abroad, we wanted to highlight some fantastic stories about past participants.

Ore Ogunbiyi attended Cambridge Immerse in 2014. She was inspired to applying to Cambridge University and was accepted. Ore returned to Cambridge Immerse as a mentor in 2016 and then as a Programme Manager in 2017.

Having successfully applied and been accepted to Cambridge University, I returned to Cambridge Immerse – this time as a mentor 

In June 2014, in search of an academic summer programme that pushed me but also gave me an opportunity to explore Cambridge. I stumbled across Cambridge Immerse and as I say to everyone who cares to listen, I would never have got into Cambridge without it.

I came with so many questions: Do I want to study International Relations or Law? What about International Relations do I find interesting? Do people like me even go to Cambridge? After those 2 weeks, I left with a much clearer vision of what my future could look like.

Continue reading Ore's story

Thanks to an incredible International Relations tutor who helped me develop my newfound interests in African politics and neocolonialism and a team of enthusiastic mentors who made Cambridge seem accessible, the dream that was once my dad’s, became mine. I embraced new academic challenges, made new friends, and left with a new drive to bring my Cambridge dream to life.

Having successfully applied and been accepted to Cambridge University, I returned to Cambridge Immerse – this time as a mentor. I wanted inspire students in the same way my mentors had inspired me. This summer, I worked as an academic programme manager to, yet again, give back to a programme that was so pivotal in determining where I’ve ended up today. As I enter my final year at Cambridge, I am still pursuing those very interests in African politics and necolonialism that I discovered on the programme.

Having been at Cambridge Immerse in some capacity for 3 years, I’m in a unique position to say that each year, the programme only continues to get better and I’m so grateful that I’ve had the opportunity to take part in, and work with, such an amazing programme.

Not only did Cambridge Immerse convince me to study International Relations, it made me fall in love with Cambridge.

I attended Cambridge Immerse in 2014 to do the International Relations course, and I absolutely loved it. I found that Cambridge Immerse was the perfect balance between academics and fun. First and foremost, we were able to delve into subjects we may not have had the opportunity to study at school. The fact that I was able to take International Relations for two weeks solidified my decision to apply for such a course at university as well. This was the first time I was introduced to Oxbridge-style supervisions, whereby teaching happens in small groups based on your presentation of your work to further challenge yourself. So not only did Cambridge Immerse convince me to study International Relations, but it also made me fall in love with Cambridge. 

Explore more about Emilia's experience

The mentors, who were Cambridge undergraduates themselves, were incredibly helpful and I am so grateful for the advice and guidance they gave me in regards to applying to such a competitive university. I honestly do not think I would currently be studying at Cambridge had it not been for the experiences that I had at Cambridge Immerse.  

CI is not only a great programme in terms of the academics and preparing for the university application process. I made many new friends during my two weeks, most of whom I still stay in touch with to this day! In fact, three of us who attended in 2014 returned to Cambridge Immerse in the summer of 2017 to work as mentors ourselves.

The two weeks that I attended Cambridge Immerse turned out to be the best weeks of my entire summer that year. The friends I made, the ability to explore a subject that I enjoyed so freely, and the opportunity to live in a fantastic city like Cambridge – well, I don’t know what else to say except that this is not an experience you’ll want to miss out on.


Emilia Persson attend Cambridge Immerse as a participant in 2014 and was so inspired by her time with us applied to the university. Emilia is currently studying HSPS at Churchill College, University of Cambridge.

Maia is a Cambridge Immerse Alumni having attended the programme in 2014. She is now studying Theology at Newnham College, University of Cambridge.

The method of teaching at Cambridge Immerse was vastly different to anything I had ever experienced in school.

I attended Cambridge Immerse as a participant in 2014, with one year left in school and the daunting prospect of university applications ahead of me. While I had a pretty good idea that I wanted to study Theology at university, I had no idea of how I would go about researching and finding my specific passion within the subject, having never studied the subject at school.

I took the Philosophy course at Cambridge Immerse, thinking that the exploration of philosophy of religion might ignite my interest. Not only did I find this to be true, but also the method of teaching at the summer school was vastly different to anything I had ever experienced in school.

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With a class size of only three students and one tutor, our lessons took the form of philosophical discussions. At the end of each class we were given a reading to prepare before the next days class, the likes of which included Plato, Descartes and Kierkegaard. I think this aspect of the Cambridge Immerse programme, above all else; put me at an advantage as a student entering university- I was prepared to form and voice my own opinions on complex matters.

Aside from the academic benefits of the programme, I was able to get a feel for the city of Cambridge, as well as experience a flavour of college life. I made lasting friendships and the traditions, aesthetics and people in Cambridge won me over and motivated me to work towards the grades I knew the university required. My mentors inspired and guided this application process, giving me advice on my Personal Statement and helping me practice my interview technique.

I have now completed my first year studying Theology, Philosophy and Religion at Newnham College, and have finished my first summer working as a mentor for the Cambridge Immerse programme, where I had the pleasure of witnessing students overcome the same challenges I was faced with, and enjoy all the aspects the city and university have to offer.

"My tutor gave me the confidence I needed to advance my understanding of my subject."

I studied Biology and benefitted from the small class sizes because I got to ask all the questions I wanted

I attended Cambridge Immerse in 2015 and had a fantastic two weeks. I studied Biology and benefitted from the small class sizes because I got to ask all the questions I wanted. I went to Cambridge Immerse at the end of Year 12, and so was able to make the most of all the help offered with my personal statement and interview techniques.

When I started the course, I had actually decided that I wanted to apply to Oxford for Biomedical Sciences but after a few days in Cambridge, I decided that I actually preferred the smaller, and in my opinion, more friendly city of Cambridge – this was reinforced when we visited Oxford on the weekend. I spoke in depth with my mentor who was studying Natural Sciences at Cambridge and came to realise that the broader Natural Sciences course was more for me.

I have now finished my first year studying Biological Natural Sciences at Emmanuel College. I feel sure that Cambridge Immerse played a role in helping me to get in – through the interview practice, personal statement consultations as well as the biology lessons, some of which covered content that was not in the A level syllabus.

Talking to all the mentors (who are all Cambridge undergraduates) helped me to build up a realistic picture of what life is like as a Cambridge student and also played a major role in helping me to decide which college to apply to.

I had such an amazing time at Cambridge Immerse that it confirmed in my mind that I would be very happy studying at Cambridge as well as allowing me to experience university style teaching. It was therefore an easy decision for me to apply to be a Summer Mentor in this year’s programme and help other people to have a similar experience to my own.

Rosie enrolled for the Cambridge Immerse Biology Programme in 2015. She is now studying Natural Sciences at Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge.

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