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Nina Klein - Natural Sciences (Physical)

Nina joined St John’s in 2009 to commence her studies in Physical Natural Sciences. She previously attended Esher College (a comprehensive Sixth Form just outside London), and took A-levels in Chemistry, Physics, Maths and Further Maths.

‘After finishing Sixth Form I was really looking forward to starting university and was very excited to be going to Cambridge. Having completed my degree I can firmly say that St John’s is an amazing college, both in terms of the academic support and its amazing facilities, not forgetting of course the wonderful annual May Ball.

In 2009 I began my Natural Sciences degree going down the Physical ‘Nat Sci’ route by choosing modules in Chemistry, Physics and Materials Science. The first year was incredibly busy; a blur of making new friends and trying new things. I took up netball, playing for the College’s ladies and mixed team, the first time I played since primary school!

I really enjoyed being a part of college life; there are so many interesting people to meet outside of your subject and many activities to get involved in on a College scale. One of the best ways to get involved is to join the JCR (Junior Combination Room) committee, a group of students which represents the College’s undergraduates (similar to a Student Council). As the ‘Ents’ (Entertainments) officer I had a great time putting on events for students each term and helping with Fresher’s Week. Through this experience I learned a lot of valuable skills and made good friends with the other committee members.

As I continued with my degree I found my favourite subject was Materials Science. The subject focuses on the application of scientific innovation to real world problems by producing materials with specific properties. I discovered how exciting it was to develop technology for application during internships at ETH University in Switzerland and at consumer products company, Procter and Gamble. Staying on for a fourth year to earn a Masters gave me more time to enjoy all Cambridge has to offer and it was fascinating to hear about the projects my professors were working on, including new materials for solar panels and replacement spinal discs.

Cambridge has been a great place to grow and learn, and has been full of opportunities I would not have had anywhere else. I’m very grateful to all the tutors and staff that helped me make the most of my time here.’

Having gained a double first in her BA and Master’s degrees Nina was awarded a Materials Science Armourers and Brasiers' Prize along with college scholarships. Next year she will begin a D.Phil at the University of Oxford in the field of organic photovoltaics.

Nina Klein, August 2013