In the UK, January 15th is the deadline for applying to university – a date that is fast approaching. All over the country, students in their final year of school are getting ready to make big decisions about what to do for the next three or four years of their lives.
In the UK, the system for applying to university is centralized – you fill out one form on the website UCAS that is sent to up to five universities of your choice. This is a lot easier and more efficient than filling out the same information five different times!
On the form, you have to provide information about the exams you have taken and the exams you will take. You also write an essay about yourself called a 'personal statement'. The personal statement is, in my opinion, one of the hardest parts of applying to university. Because each student writes one, universities receive hundreds of essays that are very similar, and it is very difficult to make sure yours stands out!
Now that my youngest sister Kate is applying to university, she is extremely stressed. Because the deadline for applying to university is January 15th, many universities do not give you an answer until March. She has already filled in the form, written the essay, chosen her five universities and submitted the application, but she will have to wait for months for a reply!
Many people think that which university you go to is the most important thing in the whole world, and that it will change the rest of your life. I don't agree with this attitude. I believe that no matter which university you go to, you will have a wonderful time.
Many people in England also think that it is very important to go to university. I am having a great time being at university, and I love my course and what I study. However, the same is not true for everyone. My other sister, Sarah, hated school and her favourite subject was art. So instead of going to university, she took a course in make-up after leaving school, and now works at the make-up company MAC.
Applying to university involves lots of big decisions, but it's important to remember that no matter what happens, if you choose a course you enjoy and find some good friends when you arrive, your experience will definitely be a positive one!
What do you want to do after finishing school?