Oxford University for Jess

Regular visitors to the Orchid Project will, I am sure, want to pass on congratulations to Jess who will be studying Geography at St John’s College Oxford from this September.

Jess has been a key student in the Orchid Project since arriving at Writhlington seven years ago. She became our head grower in the glasshouses as well as lecturing widely, and leading our teams at many shows and events.

In Year 9 Jess went on her first overseas expedition to Rwanda leading workshops on orchid lifecycle for Rwandan school and college students. She showed her true grit by climbing Mount Bigugu (Nyungwe’s highest peak at nearly 3000m) after an asthma attack. Jess also took a leading role in our two recent expeditions to Borneo and the Sarawak project owes much of its success to her creativity, knowledge and enthusiasm.

Jess tells me “I am really looking forward to Oxford, meeting like minded people, exploring all the libraries, and spending time in the botanic gardens. The course will allow me to study a broad range of geographical topics, but also specialise in areas that interest me in my second and third year, such as climate change and ecology and conservation. I still need to decide which orchids I am taking with me from home, and which I trust my parents enough to look after whilst I’m gone”

Jess will now become an adult volunteer for the Orchid Project so I am sure that she will join us for shows in the near future.


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