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Meet top student Dhruva Ulavatti

PUBLISHED: 19:19 22 February 2014 | UPDATED: 08:49 06 March 2014

Dhruva Ulavatti

Dhruva Ulavatti

Rikard Osterlund

On Tonbridge, on winning a place at Cambridge at 17 and a future in engineering

Tell us about yourself My name is Dhruva Ulavatti, I’m 17 and have lived in Tonbridge for the past seven years. I go to the Judd School. My dad is a civil engineer and 
my mum is an IT consultant. I was born 
in Shimoga, India and we moved to England when I was seven years old.

What are you doing now? I am currently in Year 13, studying Maths (which I completed in Year 12 and achieved an A*), Further Maths, Physics, and Chemistry 
at A Level. I did Classical Civilisation at 
AS Level (Greek mythology and culture).

I got offers from all five of my university choices, and I am especially pleased about the ones from Imperial College London 
and Cambridge University.

I applied to do Aerospace Engineering 
at Bath, Bristol, Sheffield and Imperial, 
and Engineering at Cambridge.

It was very easy to accept the offer 
to read Engineering at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge; I worked very hard, 
all with the intention of getting into Cambridge. That is why I was so happy (and extremely relieved) when I got 
my offer letter, as I felt that all my hard work had paid off.

The course at Cambridge is general for 
the first two years, after which I can decide on the sector I wish to specialise in. This broad-base structure also means I can make a more informed decision, as I will have a better idea of my strengths and weaknesses.

I got into engineering from the age of 
13, when I went to a careers talk at Judd. From then on I became increasingly interested in how things worked and wanted to actually understand the 
theories and concepts that I was learning 
at school, and how to apply them to 
solve real world problems.

Furthermore, maths and physics 
have always been my favourite and 
best subjects, and engineering is a 
perfect combination of them both.

Your plans when you graduate?

I have become quite interested in a career in Formula 1 and so when I graduate, I 
hope to go into that industry. Another 
field which is of interest is space, so maybe a career in the ESA or NASA. I would 
also like to gain a degree in psychology someday, as I have become interested 
in this field over the past few years.

What do you enjoy about living in Kent? Kent is a very practical place to live and Tonbridge especially, as I live very close to Judd, the high street and the train station.

Might you live and work abroad?

I definitely see myself living elsewhere in the world. I can stand the cold, but hate 
the rain! I am very tempted to live and work abroad after I graduate. I do not have any specific idea of where yet, but somewhere where I can earn a lot of money so that I 
am financially secure for later on in life.

What are your hobbies and interests? My main hobbies include Taekwondo. I 
am a red tag and have won a gold medal 
for sparring at national level. I am also part of the Judd School CCF (combined cadet force), which means I get to go on night exercises and do shooting. I enjoy the leadership opportunities it gives me.

I like watching TV, shows like Sherlock, The Big Bang Theory, and A Question of Sport. I enjoy watching and playing most sports, especially basketball and cricket.

What was the last book you read?

The House of Hades – Heroes of Olympus, by Rick Riordan. It’s like a young teenager’s book, part of a series I started when I was 12, so I have just kept up to date with the ones I enjoy. I like reading these kinds of novels as it allows me to relax and take my mind off other, more important things.

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