Andrew Mitchell, 1986
I was, like many of my generation, the first in my family to have studied A Levels, let alone aspired to University. So applying to Oxford and to Queen’s was an exciting and overwhelming experience. Having travelled little and adventured less, I was awe-struck as a 17-year old by the idea that the College had invited me to interview. But the experience of meeting people who clearly thought and felt as I did was perhaps the first big, transformative moment of my life beyond home and school.
Queen’s opened a new world of experience to me. The magic of College life sprang from the extraordinary combination of intimacy and opportunity - the sense of community, the quality and diversity of the people that Queen’s brought together and the diversity and richness of experience in sport, drama, social, literary and intellectual life. My life was shaped by the doors that opened at Queen’s.
Life after Queen's
After Queen’s I joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and spent twenty extraordinary years travelling the world. I was in Kathmandu during years of civil war and in Germany as Europe convulsed in turmoil following the fall of the Berlin Wall. I was fortunate to serve as Britain’s Ambassador to Sweden at a moment when governments raced to rescue the European economy from collapse. I was then the Foreign Office Director for the London 2012 Games as Britain emerged from crisis, looked in the mirror and found a diverse, quirky, more confident country looking back at the world. I have since crossed the street to the private sector and am Director of M-is, an international strategy, brand and communications agency