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Why choose Sidney Sussex?

Students relax in the TV roomIn this section we want to explain what makes Sidney special to us, and why we think it's somewhere you should consider.

Every student at Cambridge is admitted by and becomes a member of a College, which becomes their home while they are at university. That's why most students feel a stronger connection to their College than to the university as a whole. The College is the place students live and the focus of their social life, but it also has an important academic role, providing the individual teaching that is a key part of the Cambridge education.

There are 29 Colleges that admit undergraduate students, so choosing between them can seem a difficult task. It's important to remember that the choice of College will not make a difference to your statistical chance of gaining a place at Cambridge. Probably the best way to choose is to pick an environment that you think will suit you, and where you will feel at home.


What makes Sidney special?

  • Our focus on helping you to achieve

    • The ethos of the College is all about achieving to the best of your potential, and you'll find that we will give you every support you in doing this. A structured learning skills programme will help develop your study and revision techniques, while supervisions give you the  opportunity to develop and debate your ideas with your fellow students and academics. Our varied programme of extra-curricular talks and lectures adds to the environment, and makes Sidney a place where bright and ambitious students flourish.
  • Our small and inclusive student body

    • The atmosphere at Sidney is friendly and unpretentious, and our students are known throughout Cambridge for their strong sense of community. We admit around 105 undergraduates each year, and this means that everyone gets to know each other very quickly. We have an active students' union and various sports clubs, music and drama societies, and there are plenty of opportunities to meet students in other subjects and year groups. Our small size means that we value participation, and whatever your level, there will be a team or club keen to have you involved.
    • The Sidney Sussex College Student Union, otherwise known as SCUSU, run their own website and this provides a useful insight into Sidney life from a student perspective. Please visit the website to access lots of helpful information, including some personal testimonies written by Sidney students on studying their subjects here.
  • Our town centre location

    • We're right in the centre of town, close to university faculties and departments, and with shops, restaurants and bars all around. Despite our peaceful setting and tranquil gardens, we have Cambridge right on our doorstep.
  • Our excellent food

    Lunchtime in Hall

    • The quality of food at Sidney is well known, and our chefs have won numerous awards. Most students choose to eat in the College dining hall at least once a day - as well as providing a good value meal, it's an opportunity to meet friends and plan the rest of your day. Most meals are self-service, and there is always a wide choice of hot and cold meals. Three times a week there is a more formal option, where a three course dinner is served. These are popular occasions for inviting friends from other Colleges.
  • Our strong financial support system

    • Through the Cambridge Bursary Scheme, Sidney is able to provide a range of  bursaries for students in financial need. There are also grants for study and travel, and hardship funds for students with unexpected financial problems.

'We are a forward-looking College, with firm plans for continuing and ever greater success in academic endeavour, music, sport and many other activities. This is an exciting time for the College, and if you want to explore just how far your abilities will take you, then come and join us!'

Professor Richard Penty, Master