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Who comes to Clare? Clare is the second oldest college in Cambridge. It was founded in 1326.

It’s in the centre of Cambridge. It’s on the river.

Our oldest buildings were built in the 16th century.

Our newest were finished in 2009.

We have about 500 undergraduates.

About 130 of them are first years.

That makes Clare small enough to be friendly, even intimate. Big enough to be interesting and varied.

Our students come from all over the world. They come from every type of school.

But all that matters to us is that you’re somebody who we think will do well at Clare College and be happy here.

What do our students think of Clare?

Find out at:



When you become a member of Clare, you become a member of one of the world’s best universities. You will go to the department that teaches your subject. You can use the library, labs and other facilities you need. The University arranges and administers courses, lectures and exams. Clare arranges most of your personal teaching. We want our students to do well. We have academics in almost every subject. Many of them are Directors of Studies, who guide the students. College teaching mostly takes place in supervisions. Supervisions are sessions of an hour with one teacher and you and perhaps one or two other students. You’ll have at least one supervision a week for the whole time you are here. In most subjects, you’ll have more. Often you’ll discuss a piece of your written work. Where will you write it? In your room? In the library? In the College garden? In your pyjamas?

That’s up to you.

For more information about teaching at Clare:



In your 1st year, you’ll live in Memorial Court, just across the river.

In your 2nd year, you’ll live in the Colony, about 10 minutes’ walk from the College. (It’s less by bike. Most of our students get a bike.)

You’ll live in a Clare room for all 3 years. Maybe for longer if your course is longer. You’ll have your own room. You’ll have Wifi. You might even have your own bathroom. Tell us if you have special requirements. Some rooms cost less, some cost more. You can choose how much you pay.

In your 3rd year, if you’re lucky in the ballot, you’ll live in Old Court, in a room built 400 years ago.

Formal Hall is a three-course evening meal you dress up for. It’s served in the Hall. You can invite guests from other colleges. They’ll probably invite you back. It looks expensive and tastes expensive. But it’s not.

Our second and third year students choose their room by ballot. You can choose to be with a group of friends. (Nobody in Clare, though, is ever far from anybody else.) You can eat in the College Hall and Buttery. You can cook for yourself. Every few rooms share a small kitchen.

For more information about living at Clare:



Clare Library has more than 30,000 books.

If that’s not enough, the University Library is right behind Memorial Court. Clare also has its own Law Library. There are computers and printers in the IT suite. When you need a break, you can relax in the Library Common Room. There are coffee and cakes in exam terms. You won’t have far to go to lectures. Clare is right in the centre of Cambridge, only a few minutes’ walk from most of the Departments. There’s a map on the back cover.


If you want to try something new, there’s no better place to start. (You’d be surprised at how many of our students take up rowing.)

Clare students produce their own newspapers and magazines.

You’ll come to Clare to work, but that’s not all you’ll do...

If there’s something you enjoy, you’ll find others here who enjoy it, too.

Clare’s allotment was set up by students. You could start your own Society.

Clare students are on all our important committees.

Clare holds a May Ball every year. That is, a whole night’s entertainment after the exams, held, oddly, in June. It’s organized by some of our students. You could be one of them.

Clare has its own sports ground. Some of our students play for the University. (Some of them play for fun!)

For more information about sports and societies at Clare:



Clare is well-known for its music The Chapel choir has an international reputation. The Music Society puts on regular orchestral, choral and chamber concerts. We have our own music practice rooms. If you sing or play an instrument, Clare is a good place to be. If you don’t but you’d like to, it’s a good place to start. Clare Cellars is run by Clare students. It’s a bar. It’s a venue for live music, stand-up, theatre, fancy dress nights . . . The Tab, a student newspaper, said that “in terms of

value for money and good music, you would struggle to find a better Friday night out in Cambridge.”


Being at University is not like being at school.

It can be a bit of a shock. At Clare, you’ll be one of only about 130 first year students. You’ll have two ‘parent’ students specially picked for you by the older students. To help you get started, we run a study skills day before lectures begin. Throughout the year, we provide extra help if you need it. We have a College nurse. You’ll have a personal tutor who can help you sort things out if life gets difficult.

For more information about support at Clare:



We don’t want you to worry about money. Talk to us about it. We may even be able to give you some.

For more information about finance at Clare:



We’ll help you think about your future. Clare was the first Cambridge college to have a careers adviser. Some students arrive knowing just what they want to do. If you don’t know, don’t worry.

We’ll help you make up your mind.

Former students come to Clare and tell you about their careers. They will teach you

how to write a CV and how to make the best of yourself in an interview. Our graduate students run evening sessions telling you how to apply for

further study.

We have special schemes for internships, here and abroad.

On the facing page are some past Clare students, what they did when they were here and what they did afterwards:

For more information about careers advice at Clare:


Briony Hudson (1993) History Freelance Museum Curator & Pharmacy Historian

Suba Das (2002) English Associate Director for Community Engagement at Leicester Curve

Jo Dally (2001) Psychology Private Secretary to the government’s Chief Scientific Adviser

James Atkins (1987) Modern & Medieval Languages Chairman of Vertis Environmental Finance (carbon trading)

Sheridan Kates (2000) Engineering Product Manager at Google

Robin Ticciati (2001) Music Conductor & Music Director at Glyndebourne

Anton Chambers (2004) Law Solicitor at Clifford Chance LLP

China MiĂŠville (1991) Archaeology & Anthropology Award winning Sci-Fi Novelist

Madhuri Warren (1985) Pathology Managing Director at Pathology Diagnostics Ltd

Niccolo de Masi (1998) Physics CEO & President at Glu Mobile

Helen MacNamara (1995) History Deputy Director, Future Planning, Department for Culture, Media & Sport

David Kerr (1986) Classics Bafta-winning TV & film director (Fresh Meat, That Mitchell & Webb Look)


We do everything we can to make applying as straightforward as possible. It’s as serious a matter for us as it is for you. We want to find the students who will do best and be happiest at Clare. This is a brief summary of the application procedure:


Apply to UCAS in the usual way. The deadline, though, is earlier.


We’ll email you an extra questionnaire that asks for information about your latest exam results.


We’ll decide whether to invite you to interview as soon as possible.


We may ask you to send us some written work from school or to take a test.


Interviews are in December. In January, we’ll tell you whether or not we’re offering you a place.

Please, please read the online guidelines about how to apply...

For more information about applying to Clare:



You’ll almost certainly be nervous.

An interview at Clare is not, however, an interrogation. It’s a discussion, an opportunity for you to show us how you think about your subject. Our aim is not to find you out. It’s to find out about you. We’ll look forward to meeting you. We hope you’ll look forward to meeting us.

For more information about interviews at Clare:



Come and see us.

Visiting a College can help you choose the right course. Come to one of our Open Days and talk to our academics and our students. If you like, bring your parents or teachers with you. There are sessions for them, too.

You can go to a talk on your own subject. You can watch a mock interview to see what it’s like. You can visit the college library. You can look at some student rooms and see where you might live. We like to think we run the best Access scheme in Cambridge. Our Schools Liaison Officers visit schools and show applicants round the College. Clare students volunteer to join them. You might want to do that.

For more information about access at Clare:


First Days


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