University Successes

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Success for Karolína Zvoníčková

2020 has been an exceptional year for everybody, for many of the wrong reasons. So it is easy to overlook the outstanding successes of the ECP graduating class of 2020.

84% go to their first choice university

Despite all the challenges associated with lockdown and IB exams being cancelled, many of our students still achieved the excellent set of grades they worked exceptionally hard to achieve. This was reflected in their final university destinations with a massive 84% of students reaching their first choice destination and 93% reaching either their first choice or second choice university.

This is especially impressive given how aspirational our students are, with many of them applying to the very best and most competitive universities in the world.

New Destinations

The destinations of our students were particularly diverse this year with 10% opting for new options in Europe in countries such as Italy, Spain, Belgium, Sweden and Germany. Others chose destinations a little further afield with 5% of students applying to institutions in the US, Singapore and Australia. This was alongside the usual popular destinations of the UK (43%), Holland (10%) and the Czech Republic (21%).

Top Universities

As well as the successes that ECP students usually enjoy, with many of our students this year achieving places at highly ranked universities such as Oxford, LSE, UCL, Kings College and Edinburgh, we have also had a lot of personal successes with students choosing for the right university for them. This includes specialist institutions such as the BIMM music institute in Berlin or the Future Games Institute in Sweden. 

‘Putting something back’

Jan Barta graduated from the ECP in 2004 and he is now a successful entrepreneur. A firm believer in the principle of ‘putting something back’, he generously funds several scholarships for current students. Two Barta Scholars were exceptionally successful this year.

Oxford University & the LSE

Karolína is off to Oxford to study Biomedical Science and David will be studying International Relations and Politics at the London School of Economics. Neither would have been able to study at the ECP without Jan Barta’s financial support.

We caught up with them to find out how they were feeling at the start of the academic year:

Karolína said:

“I recall that merely a couple of years ago, securing a place at such a renowned institution comprised of highly esteemed alumni such as Stephen Hawking, Bill Clinton and Malala Yousafzai would have seemed entirely inconceivable and yet here we are. At the moment, I am incredibly excited to become a member of the Oxford community and to meet like-minded individuals with overlapping interests and aspirations. I am likewise thrilled by the immense variety of societies that Oxford offers and I am really looking forward to this new chapter in my life.”

She was particularly happy to offer some advice to current students.

“Whether you are writing your Personal Statement or being interviewed, always emphasise what you are genuinely interested in. Try to showcase your enthusiasm for your chosen subject and to enjoy your interview in the process. Also, bear in mind that the interview is, in essence, another exam or a competition if you prefer – your performance will literally be graded by the interviewers, averaged and you will ultimately be ranked. Therefore, my greatest word of advice would be to revise all your subject relevant knowledge and to reach as further as you can beyond the scope of the syllabus for it is this that will most likely determine the status of your application.”

The cover photo shows Karolína with ECP Governor, Jan Kovařovic, receiving the Chairman of Governor’s Prize for Academic Achievement at this summer’s Graduation ceremony.

David was equally excited at the prospect of moving to London, saying:

“Soon, I am going to start my studies at the LSE. I am excited to start this new chapter of my life at such an excellent institution. I am grateful for all the support that I received from the staff at the ECP because they helped me to get there. And should I be asked to give current ECP students some advice, I would say: 

1) Make the best of your time at the ECP. Because one day, however distant or close it may be, you will walk through the blue doors for the last time as a student. 

2) In the meantime, you can strive to be the best version of yourself. One of many great advantages of studying at the ECP for me was how supportive everyone was when I asked for help. And this helped me to grow as a person immensely. 

3) This leads me to the last piece of advice: Ask yourself how you want to grow. I assume that you probably set yourself some SMART goals at the beginning of the school year. And some of you could probably recall that the ‘M’ in SMART stands for measurable. I would like to challenge you to keep in mind another adjective that begins with ‘M’ as you set your targets and that would be meaningful. Ask yourselves: is this meaningful for me, for the way I want to lead my life? 

Enjoy your ECP days and good luck meeting your SMMART targets!”

You can read a recent article on the website about David here.

Good advice from them both, as always. Regardless of the students’ success, we are equally proud of them all.