Tuesday, January 26

Louis Michael: And in the end…

- April 23, 2018

louis

Three years ago this August I got a phone call that ended in me being offered at place at university. My grades were far from good enough, but it was through the grace of the clearing system that I was given the chance to carry on studying. The moment I said yes I was swept up into a whirlwind that hasn’t stopped spinning. Until now. In two weeks I hand in the last assignment of my third and final year of university; even writing that now I can barely believe it’s true.

When I started university I had a lot to prove. I’d spent my entire academic life coasting, doing just enough to get by, and all throughout secondary school it had worked. Then college came along like a painfully rude awakening and I found myself desperately floundering. I couldn’t coast anymore because the difficulty level had just shot through the roof, but I didn’t know how to buckle down and discipline myself to do the proper work and revision because I’d never really had to do that before. All this was a recipe for disaster and for the two years of college I was locked into a cycle made up of fear of failure, self-loathing for not fulfilling potential and academic disillusionment.

Then, when the offer to study at university came along it was like a deus ex machina, and I seized the opportunity for a chance to start over and learn from my mistakes. It brings me great happiness to be able to say that’s exactly what I did.

I went to university never having done a proper day’s work in my life, but I worked through my fears and problems and I shattered my own expectations. I did well, and what’s more, I enjoyed it! The academia, the studying, the environment of learning, it all rang differently at university level, and I felt myself connecting with it for the first time in my life.

And now here I am at the other end, 21 years old and genuinely so sad to see it all go. But more than anything I’m happy, happy that I could prove my 18-year-old
self wrong.


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