I’d been at university three weeks when I seriously considered dropping out. The high of fresher’s had worn off, the workload had started to pile up and in the moments when no one else was around and I was sat by myself in my (pretty awful) accommodation, I found myself wondering- what am I actually doing here?
We’ve all had a moment of realising that our loan is quickly running out, no one actually has the energy to go out every night and deadlines do actually have to be met. And we’ve all had a moment of thinking: “What’s the point?” I had a friend from sixth form who only lasted two days.
Now, of course, things got better. If I’d have given up there and then I wouldn’t be making firsts in my assignments, I wouldn’t be writing this blog and I wouldn’t currently be picking a house to live in with my flatmates next year. Sitting through the hard times turned out to be worth it. But it got me thinking, what about the people who don’t stick it out? What if someone had told them it gets better, or even how they could make it better themselves?
Why uni is worth it…
- Job prospects: This might seem obvious, but your job prospects massively increase once you have a degree, and it makes you far more attractive to potential employers. University opens up so many doors that would be otherwise unavailable to you.
- Experience: There really is no experience quite like university: living with your friends, all nighters in the library, end of year balls, graduating. It would be a shame to miss out on it all for one moment of feeling like you can’t cope.
- It really does get better: However hard it might seem at times, it won’t always be that way. Bad days pass. Things get easier. And when you’re standing there on graduation day, you’ll be glad you hung in there.
“Your mind is a galaxy. More dark than light. But the light makes it worthwhile […] Even when the darkness is total. Always know that life is not still. Time is space. You are moving through that galaxy. Wait for the stars.” – Matt Haig, ‘The Humans.’
So what can you do?
But if you’re really not happy, there are some smaller steps you can take before deciding to drop out…
- Societies: If the problem is that you’re bored with the same work – sleep – eat – repeat routine, then do something new! I’m fairly certain there’s a society for everything , you’ll make new friends, it gets you out of the routine, and you might learn something valuable.
- Swapping course: Just because you started uni doing the one thing you liked from A level, it doesn’t mean you’re meant to finish your degree in the same subject. There’s lots of options available for transferring onto a different course and, if you’re not sure what you want to do, a facility like Tyfy could help you talk to people on other courses and see what else is out there.
- Transferring uni: Okay, so this one is a little more drastic, and definitely isn’t a decision you should enter into lightly. But just because you’re not settled in one university, it doesn’t mean you’re not cut out for it at all. If you’re not happy with where you are- move!
The bottom line is that, when you’re finding it hard to cope, you shouldn’t think your only option is to drop out of uni altogether. You don’t deserve to be here any less just because you’re struggling- in fact, most people are.
Even if it doesn’t always feel like it, things do get better, and there’s always something you can do to improve the experience for yourself.