Kate Middleton Remained ‘Very Grounded’ in College Despite Being Voted ‘Prettiest Girl’ in Her Dorm, Old Schoolmate Says

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge was an ordinary girl from England before dating Prince William. However, even before being a royal, Kate was apparently quite popular with her peers and captivated people around her.

In fact, she was even voted the “prettiest girl” in her college dorm, though all the attention did not go to her head. 

Kate Middleton smiles outside the City Museum
Kate Middleton | Samir Hussein/WireImage

Where did Kate Middleton go to college?

Kate attended the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. She studied art history and graduated in 2005.

This was also where Kate met William. The two of them lived in the same residence hall—St. Salvator’s Hall—during their first year at St. Andrews. According to former schoolmate Laura Warshauer, who lived in the same dorm at the time, Kate and William’s chemistry was obvious from the start.

“Whenever Kate was in the room, Will was obviously paying attention to her,” Warshauer told People (via Tatler), “When we’d be sitting at lunch in the dining hall and the two of them would be talking, it was amazing to see how natural it was, how they had so much to say to each other.”

Kate Middleton was voted the ‘prettiest girl’ in her dorm

Kate Middleton in graduation outfit at University of St. Andrews
Kate Middleton graduating from university in 2005 | Anwar Hussein Collection/ROTA/WireImage

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At St. Salvator’s Hall, Warshauer said Kate was known for her beauty. In fact, she was even voted the “prettiest girl” at the end of the year. However, Kate still remained down-to-earth despite her popularity.

“She’s very grounded, and that sense of ease comes through in the way she carries herself and the way she just graciously walked up and accepted this award,” Warshauer said. “She’s obviously stunning – but she doesn’t act in any way like, ‘Oh, I’m this gorgeous person.’”

In Andrew Morton’s book William and Catherine, Michael Choong, another friend of the royal couple, also recalled Kate attracting many guys’ attention.

“Guys would go to the canteen for breakfast and they would eye up Kate,” Choong said. “They’d be joking, ‘Who is going to date Kate?’ Then someone would turn to Will and remark, ‘Obviously, you’ve got the best chance.’”

Kate and William began dating during their second year at the school. During their second year, they also moved out of St. Salvator’s Hall and into a house with two of their friends.

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Perhaps it isn’t surprising that Kate was well-liked as a student. Even now, she remains one of the most popular members of the royal family.

According to British research firm YouGov, Kate is the third most popular royal. She has an approval rating of 59 percent. Ahead or her are Queen Elizabeth and William; they have approval ratings of 69 percent and 61 percent, respectively.

Since joining the royal family, Kate has impressed the public with her advocacy for causes such as mental health and child development. She is also a skilled photographer and recently used her knowledge to help publish the book Hold Still, which features photographs from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.