Charlotte Laycock is the narrator of Know Your Oxford - an interactive audio tour that helps new and prospective students to find their feet in the city.
Originally from Greater Manchester, Charlotte is now in her fourth year of a Clinical Medicine degree at St Hilda’s College.
She explained why she got involved In the tour, and how she thinks it will help future students joining the University.
Why did you agree to narrate Know Your Oxford?
“I decided to take part in the tour to help produce a great resource for new students to the University of Oxford to use. This resource would have been really helpful in my first year to orientate where things are in the town and I think will be a great addition to the Freshers' Week timetable.”
What was your experience like when you thought about applying to Oxford, and then starting here?
There are very few people who come to Oxford from where I live, in Greater Manchester. Moving to Oxford was a long journey for my parents and I was particularly apprehensive about bringing a bike with me - which I soon learned was the best thing I brought to Oxford!
“Going to Oxford was always daunting, especially as everyone would be at a similar intelligence level to me. However, when I started, I soon made friends and settled into my college, and have had so many amazing opportunities that I wouldn't have experienced anywhere else e.g. croupiering for RAG casino, coxing the M1 boat in my college rowing team.”
How do you think the tour will help new and prospective students?
“The tour will almost definitely help new students orientate where the most important buildings are within Oxford for them - whether that be a particular library or department. This will save so much time compared to trying to find things on Google Maps later on.
“Even before applying, this tour will help students to realise that whilst the university buildings are quite spread apart, there is never more than a 10-15 minute bike cycle between buildings.”
What is your highlight of the tour?
“The highlights for me are the Covered Market and the Gloucester Green sections. There is so much to explore in these areas and find something new to try! I definitely think students will come back to these areas again even after completing the tour.”
Do you have any top tips for new students who looking to come to Oxford?
“If students are unsure about applying to Oxford, they should first not be put off by the idea of scary/weird interview questions. Try and have a look around the departments and colleges on a Taster Day or Open Day, to really inform you on your choice of subject and which college you will live at during the course of your degree. Once you arrive at Oxford, I would say to make sure to get involved in all the Freshers’ week events, go to Freshers’ Fair and throw yourself into a new society or sport. This is the best way to meet new people.”
If you are a new and prospective student, you can download the Know our Oxford tour at www.ox.ac.uk/knowyouroxford