London to Cambridge

Over the past year I’ve graduated from university, moved town, and embarked on a PhD, so there’s a lot to catch up on.

I scraped through the last year of my natural sciences BSc at University College London (UCL), feeling fed up with cramming quantum mechanics equations and biochemical signalling pathways into my head and ready to get on with something I was passionate about. I had decided to apply to PhD programmes the previous year after undertaking a 2 month research internship in Buzz Baum’s lab at UCL, which persuaded me that scientific research was what I wanted to do. After being extremely fortunate with the encouragement and guidance I received whilst interviewing for a few different programmes, I  accepted a place at the University of Cambridge. Living in London had been an eye opening and exciting experience, however, I felt that it was time for a change of scene and a less hectic and rushed way of living.

View across London

Cambridge university has 31 different colleges and as a PhD student I was required to enrol with one of them. I chose King’s College partly because it has a reputation for being one of the most liberal colleges and partly because it’s ridiculously pretty.

King’s College

This meant that I moved into a room in one of King’s colleges graduate student houses and got the chance to meet a bunch of great people at college events. This was a huge contrast to student life at UCL where you have to find your own private accommodation after your first year of university, and commute across London to meet people. Things are made so easy and comfortable in Cambridge by comparison. It’s a very different way of doing things and I am glad to have experiences of both.

Bridge of Sighs
Punting outside King’s

So far I’m finding life in Cambridge to be relaxed and focused. One of the things I enjoy the most about living here is being able to cycle anywhere, any day. Whilst the nightlife and variety can’t compare to London, I feel like Cambridge will be a great place to focus and learn over the next three years.


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