Engineering student wins place at Princeton University

NCS student Ayesha Karim, 18, has been offered a place at Princeton University.

Ayesha Karim, 18, has been offered a place at Ivy League university Princeton. - Credit: Tom Barnes

A student has been offered a “life-changing opportunity” at an Ivy League university.

Newham Collegiate Sixth Form student Ayesha Karim has won a place at Princeton University in New Jersey, after also receiving Oxbridge offers.

The 18-year-old from Ilford will study engineering at the same campus as US President John Kennedy, former First Lady Michelle Obama and Amazon boss Jeff Bezos.

Ayesha said: “This is a completely life-changing opportunity.

“I have the chance to go to Oxford or Cambridge but this is on another level entirely.

“I am so excited to see where this amazing opportunity will take me.” 

Ayesha is the ninth student from Newham Collegiate Sixth Form, known as the NCS, to have been offered a place at one of the US Ivy League institutions.

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She said her acceptance to Princeton was “entirely because” she chose the East Ham sixth form over others.

“It is not just that they put these kinds of opportunities in front of you and make you believe you can achieve them,” Ayesha said. 

“They also put you in a position where you actually have a chance of being accepted. 

“For example, I had an all-expenses-paid work experience placement at CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) in Switzerland - that went a long way to getting into Princeton.”

Last year, Ayesha was among a select group of students worldwide to win the Harvard University book award, which is given to learners applying for a place who excel academically and showcase good character.

NCS headteacher Mouhssin Ismail said: “We are very proud of Ayesha not just because her hard work has led to this wonderful opportunity but also because she had the confidence and belief that it was possible.

“Also, she has once again set the bar for her fellow students and the community to aspire to, it creates aspiration and dedication in others   

“Every time a student from NCS wins a place at somewhere like Princeton, somewhere else another young person is inspired to follow in their footsteps.”

Four students at NCS won scholarships for Ivy League universities worth a total of £1million last year.