Nobel laureate and straight-As student Malala gets into Oxford

18 Aug 2017


Pakistani girl's rights activist and Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai today secured a place at Oxford University after getting her A-level results.

The youngest Nobel laureate in history Malala Yousafzai  

The Nobel Peace Prize winner will follow in the footsteps of numerous world leaders by studying Philosophy, Politics and Economics or PPE at the prestigious British university.

The UN Messenger of Peace, who lives in Birmingham since she was airlifted for a life-saving surgery after being shot in the head by the Taliban nearly five years ago, confirmed the news in a tweet congratulating all students getting their board level exam results today (See: Taliban tells Malala to 'end smear campaign, return home'). 

The 20-year-old Yusafzai tweeted a screenshot of the confirmation that she will study PPE – a course that the media says rules Britain. It has been studied by many politicians including former UK Prime Ministers David Cameron, Sir Edward Heath and Harold Wilson, former Australian PMs Malcolm Fraser, Bob Hawke and Tony Abbott, and Labour leaders Hugh Gaitskell and Ed Miliband.

In March this year, she told a conference she had received an offer, which was conditional of achieving three 'A's at A-Level, but did not reveal the institution

"So excited to go to Oxford!! Well done to all A-level students - the hardest year. Best wishes for life ahead!" she tweeted.

PPE is one of the university's most over-subscribed courses. Other notable alumni of PPE at Oxford University are former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, whom Malala describes as her heroine and Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi.

Malala's father, Ziauddin Yousafzai, tweeted, "My heart is full of gratitude. We are grateful to Allah and thank you to all those who support Malala for the grand cause of education."

Lady Margaret Hall College, Oxford  

Alan Rusbridger, a former editor of The Guardian newspaper who is now principal of the university's Lady Margaret Hall College, tweeted: "Welcome to @lmhoxford,Malala!"

Two years ago, Malala received '6A*'s and '4A's during her GCSEs. The grades included 'A*'s in maths, biology, chemistry and physics, and 'A's in history and geography.

She also got an 'A*' in religious studies and a maths IGCSE, as well as As in English language and literature.

Malala's career as an activist began in early 2009, when she started writing a blog for the BBC about her life under Taliban occupation and promoting education for girls in Pakistan's Swat Valley. But her campaign angered local militants and she was shot in the head in 2012 during an assassination attempt while taking the bus to school.

Militants boarded her school bus and opened fire, also injuring two of her school friends. She became internationally known after the incident and relocated with her family to Birmingham for further rehabilitation.

She was treated at Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital and made the city her home, going on to study at Edgbaston High School in Birmingham since 2013.

In April, Malala was made the youngest ever UN Messenger of Peace. She was also the youngest person to win the Nobel Peace Prize aged 17 in 2014 (See: Kailash Satyarthi, Malala Yousafzay share Peace Nobel).

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