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Profiles

Sophy Ridge

Sophy Ridge

St Edmund Hall 2006, English

I am currently a Political Correspondent on Sky News.

It never entered my mind to do any other course than English. Ever since I was a child I have loved reading, and I enjoy dissecting and analysing literature. I knew I wanted to be a journalist, so that was at the back of my mind. But I chose to do English for the love of it, not because it might benefit my career.

Oxford gave me confidence - not being intimidated by people is a great life skill whatever career you go into

If you love books, then studying English at Oxford really is the pinnacle. You are taught by the best tutors, you have access to the best libraries, and you can have impassioned debates with your tutorial partners. What could be better than that?

Going to university is always slightly intimidating, and Oxford more so than anywhere else. But when you arrive, the collegiate system means you have a ready-made social group rather than a sprawling mass of students. Plus, if you're lazy like me, there's a certain attraction to having the canteen, your bedroom, the library and the bar all within a few minutes’ walk of each other.

Oxford gave me confidence - not being intimidated by people is a great life skill whatever career you go into. Oxford also taught me how to form an argument, how to plan my time and - very importantly - how to cook and look after myself away from home!

The single best selling point of Oxford University is the tutorial system. It's simply incredible to think that you have access to one-on-one or two-on-one lessons with the best professors in the world, without having to pay a single penny more than any other university. Plus what you don't realise at the time is Oxford is one massive networking experience. You're studying and making friends with the brightest people in the country - who knows where they may end up in 10 years time? Prime Minister? Boss of Tesco?

There's no question that I wouldn't have got where I am so quickly if it wasn't for Oxford. My first contact with the News of the World was when one of their Managing Editors came to talk at the University. I approached him, went on work experience and the rest is history.

So many important people come to speak at Oxford, whether at careers events or at the Union, so there are lots of opportunities to network.

Oxford also contributed to my career by transforming me from a bright-eyed teenager to a confident young woman.