The story behind the results

One of our star performers in the 2017 public examinations was Natalie, who gained seven A levels/Pre Us at A*/A/D1 and D2 grades. Our congratulations go to Natalie for her amazing achievement across Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Maths, Further Maths, Chinese and the EPQ. Here Natalie shares her thoughts on her future aspirations and reflects on her time in the Sixth Form at Downe House.

“For university, I am planning on going to King's to study Medicine, and hope to become a doctor. Despite the hard work, I think Medicine is a very rewarding profession, so I am very excited to start in September and meet everyone there!

I've always enjoyed sciences and maths, which was why I chose these subjects at A level. I had taken several subjects early, which allowed me to choose all three sciences in Sixth Form, as well as an EPQ on top of that. I thought it would be interesting to complete a research project alongside my subjects, because it gave me an insight into what research in medicine would be like, as well as keeping my essay writing skills going.

In total, I took seven A Levels, which sounds like a lot, but because I enjoyed all my subjects, it wasn't tiring or a chore to work for them. I was able to manage the workload because the tests and mocks throughout the two years kept me on track for revision. Initially I was too afraid to ask questions during lessons, but after starting the Upper Sixth, I started to approach my teachers whenever I needed help, which allowed me to gain a deeper appreciation for each subject.

I was over the moon with my results, particularly shocked with the D1 (in Chemistry) as I was not expecting that at all! I'm really grateful to all my teachers as I most definitely would not have been able to achieve my grades without them. I thought my time in the Sixth Form flew by really quickly, despite it not feeling like that at the time. I really enjoyed the Sixth Form at Downe because I was studying all the subjects that I was genuinely interested in, and we were living together in the same House as a year group. This made it fun as I was still able to spend a lot of time with my friends by working with them. In the Sixth Form, there were so many new opportunities that allowed me to stretch myself further, from help setting up the Medical Society, to editing the school magazine, and achieving a diploma in music. It was important for me to maintain a balance between work and extra curricular activities, which I managed to do and hope to continue at university.

I felt Downe has changed me a lot as a person, and so I am really glad that I had spent the last five years here. I will miss it a lot, but am also looking forward to no longer having to carry my blazer around with me at university!”

Posted: 18th Aug 2017

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