Pupil earns place on Cambridge course

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Exciting times . . . Columba College pupil Olivia Charles (16) has won a partial scholarship for the University of Cambridge's Immersive Summer School, based on her essay about international relations. PHOTO: JESSICA WILSON

A Columba College pupil has earned her spot at the University of Cambridge’s summer school.

Year 12 pupil Olivia Charles (16) won a partial scholarship for the international relations course.

She was required to write an essay responding to a quote from Vladimir Putin: “Preserving law and order in today’s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not”.

In her essay, she created a Christmas metaphor for the United Nations and the law.

“I said it was like a family that was gathering around at Christmas and how it’s really difficult when people are fighting over presents, or there’s an aunt who doesn’t believe in Christmas.”

She wrote that international law was important, but Putin was hypocritical because he had broken international laws.

Olivia’s essay was one of the 350 that was shortlisted, which landed her the partial scholarship.

The top essay-writer won a full scholarship.

Olivia said she was in disbelief when she received the email about her success.

“It was crazy.”

She chose the international relations essay because she was interested in the Middle East and United Nations.

The essay took her only two to three days to write.

At the school, people could undertake a variety of courses to introduce them to what it would be like to study at Cambridge.

When The Star spoke to Olivia last week, she had reserved a spot in the two-week course in August but her plans were uncertain because of the Covid-19 pandemic.