Class of 2020 celebrate offers to World-leading Universities and Colleges
463 University offers for Class of 2020
209 Top 100 ranked university offers, 43 Top 10 offers
US: 104 offers including 7 Ivy League, 2 Stanford
UK: 274 offers including 2 Cambridge, 1 Oxford, 181 Russell Group
Thailand: 45 offers, including 21 Medical Programmes
Rest of World: 40 offers in Canada, Europe, Australia and Asia
The outstanding students of Shrewsbury International School Bangkok Riverside’s graduating Class of 2020 are celebrating over 460* offers from leading universities across the World. They include 209 offers from World’s top 100 universities**, and 43 offers from the Top 10 universities, including Stanford (2), Oxford, Cambridge (2), Imperial (8) and University College London (30).
The UK’s top 10 ranked universities account for more than a quarter of all offers (125), with 181 to prestigious Russell Group universities.
In the USA, students earn 104 offers, including 7 offers to the Ivy League’s Columbia, Cornell, UPenn, Princeton and Dartmouth. Two offers to Stanford University follow last year's offer to the same institution by Class of 2019 graduate, Pino - who is still just 18 years old - and will begin his own studies there later this year, having deferred his offer to 2020.
Once again, there are also several offers to smaller but highly selective liberal arts colleges, including the number 1 ranked Williams College, where Year 13 Drama Scholar, Beam will join her sister, Dew (Class of 2016). Meanwhile golfer, Vicky and tennis player, Patorn earn their places on NCAA Division 1 teams at Penn State and Cornell respectively.
Highlighting a particular strength at Shrewsbury, 21 medical programme offers feature amongst a total of 45 to Thai universities, whilst Year 13 Earnie will also follow his brother Earth (Class of 2017, University of Cambridge) into medical school following his offer to Trinity College, Dublin; one of 45 offers to other leading universities in Australia, Canada, China, Hong Kong Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands and Spain.
Every application is supported and overseen by Shrewsbury’s award-winning team of higher education specialists, which will grow further next year with the addition of another UK university advisor. The team’s focus is to help Shrewsbury students find university courses that best match their individual needs and ambitions. In 2020 this has resulted in offers to over 160 universities worldwide, and is a process that relies not only on the team’s in-depth knowledge of universities and degree programmes around the world, but also on their relationships with - and understanding of - the students themselves.
“Shrewsbury has a carefully structured support programme in place, and all students have access to Higher Education advice as early as Key Stage 3”, explains Ms Fretwell, Shrewsbury’s Director of Higher Education. “We ask them to start thinking carefully about their interests and strengths at an early stage, and begin to equip them with information they will need when it comes to choosing GCSE combinations in Year 10, and A levels in Year 12 that will support specific career choices – an especially important consideration for specialised vocational programmes such as medicine. It’s a process that allows us to get to know our students really well, and together achieve our ultimate aim; to ensure that all of our students are able to make Higher Education choices that a right for them”
As Head Boy, Kazuki - who has chosen his offer to Princeton over others from Stanford, Michigan and Toronto - notes; “I wasn’t really interested in rankings. I just wanted to find some great courses in Aerospace Engineering; it’s my passion and ultimately that’s what I want to be doing with my life. The school really helps us to focus on that, and to bring that passion out in our applications. I’m really happy to have been accepted to universities with such strong and interesting aerospace programmes, and I can’t wait to start at Princeton.” In doing so, Kazuki will complete the Ivy League “full house”, with Shrewsbury graduates having been accepted to every one of those elite universities and colleges since the school opened in 2003.
Meanwhile, fellow Year 13 graduate Vicky, points to the support she received in targeting her dream of playing elite level golf in America. “I was also offered a place at Boston University [also of the NCAA Division 1], but after consulting with Ms Overton, my university counsellor at Shrewsbury, I decided that the Penn State offer was stronger in terms of what I really wanted out of the university experience.”
And as Kris - who now heads to Dartmouth - notes, that means thinking carefully about more than just the academic programmes on offer. “Just as I have come to appreciate here at Shrewsbury, [choosing a university is] about more than academics; it’s about campus life too, the whole package. I asked a lot of questions, did a lot of research and looked around a few universities; I’d recommend everyone to do the same. In the end I picked Dartmouth because I just knew I’d be happy there”.
Lucy, who moved from her native China to join Shrewsbury in Year 5, is delighted to now have the chance of studying Art History at University College London; a passion which she has been able to develop, explore and demonstrate throughout her time at the school. “What I’ve found so special about Shrewsbury is that the environment here celebrates diversity and allows you to blossom in your own way. There is no pressure to conform to any set stereotype.”
“That pretty much sums up Shrewsbury”, says Melanie, who joined the School at the start of the A level programme (Year 12) to give her the best possible chance of realising her own ambition of becoming a doctor; a move now validated by her offer to the Faculty of Medicine Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University. “[Shrewsbury] is such a diverse place, with chances to extend yourself, meet new people and feel successful. And when you commit yourself to the co-curricular opportunities too - like the Duke of Edinburgh International Award Scheme - you soon understand that the life-skills you get out of experiences like this are immeasurable and not just a vehicle to improve your chances of further study.”
For next year’s graduating Class of 2021, the application process has already begun, with the school’s unique “Jumpstart!” programme. Delivered online in the context of school closure, Jumpstart! explores the application process in detail, and provides guidance to students on the writing of effective personal statements and essays that help them to stand out.
Meanwhile, after the enforced cancellation of A level examinations due to COVID-19, it is a somewhat strange and challenging end to their school career for the Class of 2020. However, Shrewsbury is keen to ensure that the achievements of the students do not go unrecognised, and also to ensure that they are as prepared as possible for the journey ahead. Over the next few weeks, students will take part in a specially created, online, pre-university enrichment programme, which will in part draw on the insights of Shrewsbury alumni - another key resource that current students are able to draw on throughout their latter years at the school.
Ms Fretwell concludes, “Wherever our graduating students are now heading, we are equally proud of every single one of our Class of 2020, many of whom have been admitted to their dream universities. It has been our pleasure to work with so many talented young people and future leaders over the years. It is particularly pleasing to see universities offer so many significant scholarships to our students this year; awards that serve as justified recognition of their academic prowess, teamwork and innovative skills. We wish them all every success and look forward to seeing them at our many alumni events around the world as well as back home in Bangkok.”
* Data correct as of 4th May 2020. A number of offers and applications still pending at time of writing
** Rankings based on the QS World University rankings 2020