I came to CH as a new Dep in Sixth Form, having been at a state school in Shoreham. Previously, I wasn’t reaching my potential and didn’t feel I was being pushed. Here, the staff encourage you to go the extra mile if you’re interested in a subject. I often talk about topical things in the news with my physics teacher, as teachers give you respect, encouraging you to engage in and embrace a subject as much as possible. I don’t think that happens at most schools.
I first heard about CH through a family friend. She’s a teacher and was speaking to my mum about my education and mentioned Christ’s Hospital. I begrudgingly attended an Open Day, although really didn’t want to go to boarding school. But when I saw the School, I was blown away. I thought, ‘I have to get in!’
From the very first day I arrived, something clicked for me. Having underachieved and been lacking motivation, I was determined to make the most of the opportunity. I’ve always had big ambitions and aspired to be a professor at Caltech or work at NASA! I always thought such things were unlikely, but coming to CH has been a stepping stone to reaching a good university.
It’s not just the fact that the School pushes you academically. It offers a well-rounded education and pushes every part of you. I joined the swimming and athletics teams, always striving to do my best. In the boarding houses, you develop socially too, meeting people from different backgrounds. No aspect of your life is underdeveloped and the CH experience has made me more balanced and focused.
When you come into a boarding school where many pupils have been together for five years, it can be difficult if you don’t introduce yourself or get into social groups. I made it a priority to go for it and speak to as many people as possible. I thought that if I made the effort, life would be easier. I made many friends in my house and they made me feel at home. Once I felt comfortable in the boarding house, I found lessons more comfortable too.
There are many things I will miss about CH, but the first thing that springs to mind is the scenery. I was behind Grecians West with a friend one evening recently and we sat and watched the sunset. Another time, I was cycling through the Quad, looking up at clear blue skies. I tried to take a mental picture as I rode past Chapel and Big School. You just think, ‘I can’t believe this is my school!’ Sometimes, it feels like being at Oxford or Cambridge. In my final days, I am doing my best to appreciate it as I’m aware that it truly is once-in-a-lifetime stuff.
Gregory is going on to Swansea University to study Theoretical Physics.