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Seniors set sights on Oxford for post-grad studies

“[We are] delighted to inform you that your application to the University of Oxford as a graduate has been successful.”

Two ORU students recently experienced immense joy while reading these words in their six-page acceptance email.

Estara Arrant and Lauren Stanley will leave for England in October to begin their graduate studies. However, both are still waiting on their placement into a specific college at the University of Oxford.

Arrant and Stanley both cried tears of joy when they realized they would get to continue their education at the University they only once dreamed of attending.

“I am the first person in my family to go to graduate school,” Arrant said. “And Oxford of all places makes this opportunity even more exciting”

Both Arrant and Stanley dreamed about Oxford before they came to ORU. For them, it was a distant dream. But their path to Oxford was solidified after visiting the University.

Stanley studied abroad at Oxford for her junior year. She said she met “fabulously interesting people.”

Stanley said she believed it helped her acceptance that two of her three recommendation letters came from professors that teach at the university.

Arrant dreamed of going to Oxford since she was a kid. She finally stayed for three weeks at Oxford and felt very much at home.

“I cannot say for certain, but I believe what helped me get accepted is I introduced myself to someone I wanted to study under,” Arrant said. “They knew what I wanted to study and why.”

Arrant is currently a senior finishing her history major and Hebrew minor. Stanley graduated in December with an English major, humanities and writing double minor. While attending Oxford, Arrant will pursue a Masters of Philosophies Islamic studies and history. Stanley will be pursuing a Masters in Late Antique and Byzantine studies.

Arrant hopes to continue towards her Doctorate after she finshes her Masters.

After completing her education she desires to conduct research on the culture and religious relationships between Muslims and Jews in the Medieval Middle East by studying documents in Arabic and Hebrew from that era.

Stanley, after completing her education, will continue on to her Doctorate, but ultimately hopes to become a professor and remain in England.

When planning to go to graduate school, Arrant advises students not to wait to become a master in a specific field and to have a specific focus. When applying, write a statement of purpose and remember the university wants to know if the student will fit well into the school and is not just applying for its name recognition.

She advises students to avoid using clichés in their applications. Stanley advises students to apply to the early deadline.

“Overall, be determined and persevere at all costs,” Stanley said, “If I have to get a kayak and row across the ocean I will get there.”

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