Eastbourne student captains University Challenge team

Former Eastbourne College student, Verity Williams SUS-151016-141552001
Former Eastbourne College student, Verity Williams SUS-151016-141552001

A student from Eastbourne has been given messages of support from the town after appearing on University Challenge for a second time this month.

Verity Williams, 25, captained a team from Queen Mary University of London on the BBC quiz show on Monday (October 26)

The team is thought to be the first ever all-female team to appear on the show from a mixed gender university.

Verity said, “I was very pleased to be part of the first all-female team to be on the show. Also a team with an unusual selection of subjects studied.

“It was really fun, filming in the studios and seeing a few famous faces was very fun, and all those working on the programme were very friendly and made the experience a bit less nerve-wracking.”

A former pupil of Eastbourne College and Parkland Junior School, Verity is in the fourth and final year of a medicine post-graduate.

Simon Davies, Headmaster of Eastbourne College, said, “It’s always good to see a former College pupil excelling and Verity must have impressed those around her to be selected to captain the University Challenge team.

Already a Human Sciences graduate from Oxford University, Verity studies at Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, which are part of Queen Mary University.

The university boasts several famous former students including Lord Robert Winston, the novelist JG Ballard and musician Pete Doherty.

Despite some impressive expert knowledge, Verity’s team lost to Nuffield College, Oxford, by 130 points to 165 on their first performance.

The team returned to the show on Monday, losing out to Southampton University 235 to 120.

As the first show aired Verity’s team mate caused a flurry on social media due to the unlikely name of her course – Schincter preservation.

The name of Kate Lynes’s unusual course began trending on Twitter while the show aired as viewers began to crack jokes.

But while some made jokes others defended the course highlighting how Kate’s research would save lives.

Following Twitter’s reaction to the show, Kate said, “Taking part in University Challenge has been amazing, it has always been my favourite TV programme.

“Being part of all-girl team felt like a great achievement and we all really enjoyed it.

“The Twitter response was quite intense and slightly overwhelming.

“Some of the comments were amusing but it was interesting to see that there was very little awareness of the issues covered in our research.

“On a positive note, I am glad I took part and that this important subject is getting more coverage.”

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