I know a lot of people do enjoy the whole uni experience: the drinking, wild nights, new friends, education and independent living, however I think the whole idea of going is drilled into us so much throughout high school and college/sixth form that people nowadays just expect us to go.
If I could go back in time, maybe 3 years, to when I was deciding my future aspirations I would literally shake myself! I think kids are growing up far too fast with ridiculous expectations from school and as I said, I would love to go back and just say chill out Emily! Life is FAR too short to be worrying about your grades, whether you will get into uni, what you decide to do forever etc etc.
From a young age I knew I always wanted to be a Veterinary Surgeon. I was conditioned throughout the whole of high school to be goal orientated and thus chose every subject, work experience and qualifications to help me along with this dream. I even stopped myself doing things I actually would have really enjoyed (GCSE for example, I would have loved to do an art subject but instead chose Triple Science and History!). This was all because I thought I had to do things for the sake of my future 'job'. I did well at GCSE, obtaining 9 As and 3 Bs across my subjects, but the stark reality of it is that I simply was not clever enough for this lifelong dream.
When I chose what I wanted to do at Sixth Form, I hadn't gotten my results yet and so was still obsessed with this idea of someday going to Vet school. Therefore I ended up choosing Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Physics. I absolutely HATED maths and physics. I will tell you now that I did end up enjoying maths at A Level, however I did shocking!
I quickly realised upon starting college that there was no way I was going to be a vet. I'm not saying that I am completely rubbish at science, but DEFINITELY not in the league of all As. In fact, I ended up with a C in biology, D in chemistry, E in maths at A Level then a C in physics at A/S.
So as you can see, when it came to applying for universities and I had already realised this dream job was not going to happen, I had to quickly think of something else. I have always wanted to go to uni as I have always wondered what it would be like to be so independent studying for a degree- neither my brother or sister went. Saying this, once I had to decide what I was doing instead of being a vet I was scared to go straight onto work or an apprenticeship or more college work. Therefore I chose a subject I did enjoy but wasn't a particular 'dream'.
I am currently studying at a nice enough place, and the course now that I'm on it is actually really interesting! I am one of the lucky ones. You cannot imagine how upset I was at the thought of not going to uni and doing something else instead. I am studying for a BSc in Equine Science and Physiology, which honestly I do really enjoy, but I don't have a clue what I'm going to do with it when I've finished my degree.
I personally wish I had gone down a different route to uni. As I said, I do enjoy the course that I am on, but there are people here who genuinely know where they want to be in life and I feel as though I'm doing the course just for the sake of it.
I wish wish wish that somebody would have told me to maybe take a gap year, find out more about myself and have some amazing life experience. If I was to advise anyone now I would DEFINITELY advise to wait a year or so to decide if they want to go to uni or not. £9000 for the course alone is a lot to throw down the drain if you discover a month after being at uni that it isn't for you.
Please, if you are reading this and you're in the same boat as I was (i.e. not too sure what you want in life) then I would think carefully about the decisions you make. I think 17/18 is such a tender age to be pretty much deciding your career and I just think that there should be more awareness of other roads you can go down, again such as apprenticeships.
To those of you who definitely know what you want to do- go for it! I think it is amazing to have a goal you can try to achieve and know in your mind it is what you want to do.
So at the minute, I am currently going to be 19 in February and don't have a clue what to do. I am much more happy right now to take life as it comes and just relax! You have years and years to become whatever you want to be and I think it is important to ENJOY what you do. Don't just do something for the sake of doing it.
What are your opinions on this topic? Are you at university doing something you really love? Please comment your ideas and thoughts as I would like to hear from other people's perspectives :)
Thank you for reading, I know long posts can be rather tedious!