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Forget Hogwarts! Emma Watson Starts At Brown University

Sep. 8 2009, Published 1:19 p.m. ET

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Harry Potter fever is sweeping an Ivy League college – after female wizard Emma Watson checked-in to the prestigious Brown University.

Emma Watson arrives at Brown University: See more photos!

British actress Emma Watson – who plays Hermione Granger in the blockbuster series - has enrolled in the famous Providence, Rhode Island, educational institute where she will study literature.

Watson has previously said she wanted to be a normal college student and leave behind the trappings of Hollywood, so some fans cast a doubtful eye after reports surfaced over the weekend that she arrived at school by helicopter.  Not so, has learned.

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According to Watson's manager, she traveled by car, not helicopters. Brown University confirmed that claim. "We've been at this for 240 years and I can't imagine any student has ever taken a helicopter to school," said University rep Mark Nickel.

Miss Watson abandoned her wizard’s cape, spell book and wand, for some simple denim shorts, a white t-shirt and sneakers, as she mingled with a group of fellow freshmen at orientation before classes officially start on Wednesday.

The movie star student looked relaxed and happy as she prepares to take a yoga class, attended a games night, and a midnight organ concert and a kickball game.

But it won’t always be fun times - students will get to debate such diverse topics as diversity, sexual assault and Brown’s role in the transatlantic slave trade.

Watson – who is a pin-up for millions of teenage boys around the world – is hoping that she can shed her superstar status and just blend-in with her fellow students.

Emma Watson
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She said: “I do hope that it will be only a short time before I am known as ‘Emma Watson the student from the UK rather than Emma Watson who starred in the Harry Potter films.”

The school itself is trying to protect her privacy by not actually confirming that she has enrolled in Brown’s with director of communication Mark Nickel saying they would do all they can to protect the safety and privacy of their famous new student.

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Brown is one of the top universities in the United States boasting alumni which includes former presidents, diplomats, royalty, and several celebrities’ offspring – most recently George Harrison’s son Dhani.

Watson achieved straight A’s in her ‘A-level’ exams before entering the American University and although she has admitted she could turn her back on acting she will use her vacation time from Brown to make the final Harry Potter film.

It remains to be seen if she invites author J.K. Rowling and her wizard co-stars Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint to Brown for a quick game of Quidditch!



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