Wednesday, 22 December 2010

University - Is It Worth It?

I chose to study English Literature with Modern Languages at Roehampton University in London. If I had had a pound for every time I have been asked "What job are you going to get with that?" I may have been able to pay off a sizeable amount of loan.

So what job am I going to get? We are told that a University Education increases our chances of higher wages by 200% (direct quote from my head of 6th form) so ... will that happen to me? I see two possible outcomes a) I am going to be a high-flying earner in TV or advertising or publishing or something equally yawn-worthy if I get a 2-1, or if I get a 2-2 I may become b) a dole-dosser eating value bacon sandwiches and smoking weed all day in my council house, of course there is always c) an unrelated anomaly result such as becoming a pop singer or actress, TV presenter or the like. Will it make no difference at all? Perhaps because my University isn't Red-brick and there's "loads of competition in the job market" I will head straight to option b) ... perhaps it isn't even anything to do with University and my sparkling personality will hold strong through interview and get me where I want to be without a second glance at that Education section on my Curriculum Vitae? Truth is, right now it's January and I won't know until June at least what grade (if any?!?) I may achieve. And until I finish University I won't know if it has all been worth it, and if I will end up earning more than 15K a year, and returning the money kindly lent to me by the SLC. So, if it's such a big chance, with no actual guarantee of positive final outcome (obviously bar medicine and law) why do so many students enrol themselves into this often boring, stressful, difficult, long and costly process?

The recent student riots that took place have brought the issue of University to the forefront of Pubic attention, highlighting the financial strain it can take, and the tripled debt prospects for students who do not have the funds to pay for their studies upfront. The "connundrum" of University is so multi-faceted I hardly know where to begin.

So lets see, obviously when deciding whether or not to go to University, one must be in Education, heading towards achieving you A Levels, or equivalent. Surprisingly, for a girl who went to an Independent, high-achieving (academically) school, and is now a final year undergraduate student, a large amount of my friends actually don't have any GCSEs. Apart from those friends at University, most of my friends that I hang out with went to local schools close to my home area in London, which has a large amount of low-achieving schools. Some of my friends from this area of London, went to schools such as Burlington Danes, Sion Manning, or Holland Park, which can be seen on the Teach First Charity list.

So, as you can imagine, I often find it difficult to concentrate at University, and have often considered dropping out. I don't know what the final outcome will be, but I do know the experiences I have had during these past Two and a half years. I have to say, I believe University Education to be fairly overrated. I think that those who are exceptionally high-achieving academics should not hesitate to study, but that people should not enter lightly into a University Education. There are many other routes to take, and most millionaires did not go to University, take for example, Cheryl Cole, David Beckham, (Ok they sing and play football) but neither did Richard Branson, and he's a businessman, with his own set of Islands.

There is no conclusion to this blog .. I know you love a bit of mystery. If you are thinking of going to University these days and do come from a less-financially developed background 9grand a year may actually be out of grasp to imagine, however if it is really what you want to do go for it. I urge people however, like myself, who are in doubt about what they want to do in life, which subjects they want to study ect, to really research and be ready to commit, with the knowledge in mind that whilst you study, life happens. And it sometimes gets in the way...