A Cambridge college has become the first at the university to earmark places for disadvantaged students.
Corpus Christi is to create 30 new places for disadvantaged students over the next three years, under its biggest expansion in half a century.
As part of the initiative, the additional intake of students will all need to complete an intensive three week residential “bridging course” before starting their first year.
Corpus Christi, which was founded in 1352, counts the playwright Christopher Marlowe and Sir Terence Etherton, the most senior civil court judge in England, among its alumni.
Professor Christopher Kelly, who took over as the master of the College last year, said he has spent the past six months “gently” lobbying college committees, fellows and the governing body to agree to the plan.
The expansion – which will increase the size of the college by 15 per cent – is the largest the institution has undergone in half a century.
“My initial conversations with other heads of house very much encourages me to think that Corpus might be the first but within a couple of years we won’t be the only,” Prof Kelly told The Daily Telegraph.
“It’s an utter myth that my colleagues in Oxford and Cambridge don’t want to [boost diversity], we are now really taking this seriously.”