Life at St Catharine's

St Catharine’s students come to us because they want to be immersed in a unique world of intellectual vibrancy, liberal enquiry and real-world success. 

We believe the best way for students to be happy and successful at St Catharine's is for them to enter into the community of the College and enjoy it to the full. You can find more information about accommodation and facilities on their dedicated pages; below, you'll find some thoughts on a good work-play balance at Catz.


Our overriding concern is to recruit the students with the greatest academic potential, and the admissions process is designed to achieve just this. All the paperwork and interviews exist to identify the candidates who we think will perform best in the future, whatever their background. When students come to St Catharine’s, we expect them to work hard. Cambridge is the world’s premier university and academic standards are high here. Because of this, hard work is the only way to fully benefit from the Cambridge experience, and also to justify why Cambridge degrees are so highly thought of.

Here at St Catharine's, we are dedicated to helping our students achieve as highly as possible. We invest actively in an infrastructure of teachers, academic mentors, pastoral support and academic facilities which we believe are the best in the world. If you come to Catz, you will find out why the College and the University are so highly respected around the world.

The academic opportunities available at Cambridge are endless, whether it is joining the University Astronomy Society, taking a (Catz-subsidised) course at the Language Centre, or participating in one of our exchange opportunities - Catz students are eligible to apply for academic exchange programmes in Pasadena, Heidelberg, Kyoto and Boston, for example.


It's important for students to have a life outside of their work. To fully appreciate Catz, we encourage students to develop a sensible ‘work-life’ balance and to take advantage of the enormous range of extracurricular activities on offer.

As a student, you will be eligible to join any society of the college or the university. Some, but by no means all, of these have a presence on the college or University website. Whatever your chosen sporting, musical, cultural, intellectual or just-plain-silly pursuit, you will find it here. The ‘student unions’ at the college are called the Junior and Middle Combination Rooms (JCR and MCR for undergraduates and graduates, respectively). All undergraduate and graduate students are automatically enrolled, and thus can be involved in improving the student-run facilities, as well as cooperating with the college staff and fellows in improving the student experience. 

College societies including the Shirley (Literature and Arts), the John Ray (Sciences), the Music Society and others, cater for a wide variety of interests and activities. College clubs have access to playing fields, including an all-weather hockey pitch, squash and badminton courts, a gym, and a boathouse on the river. Plus, all members of the College are members of the ‘Amalgamated Clubs’ which means they can indulge in rowing, cricket, rugby and association football, hockey, tennis, squash, badminton, athletics, swimming and other sports.