Is it history for Harris? 1

September 12, 2003

Lesley Smith's claim that "all Oxford colleges can take mature students" might be true but in reality any genuinely mature students, that is to say those who are no longer in their early 20s, are scarcely visible outside Harris Manchester, and, indeed, what student of mature years would wish to be surrounded by 18-year-olds?

The fact remains that Harris Manchester is unique in that it is obliged to take students over 21 and is the only Oxford college to do so.

This compares poorly with Cambridge University, whose website boasts four colleges that take mature students only. Bearing in mind that applications cannot be made to Oxford and Cambridge in the same year, where are history applicants most likely to go?

I find it astonishing that at a time when other universities are trying to broaden access, Oxford seems intent on reducing it.

Hilary Hicklin
History graduate
Harris Manchester College

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