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Most students in their second year of college don’t truly understand the seriousness of applying to university. How can you tell? Since I began working at my old college as a mentor I have spotted the common 2 signs in any lost university applicant:

  1. They haven’t started on their personal statement
  2. They have bad grades but still have dreams of applying to the best universities.

Some of the second year A-Levels students are on UCAS nearly everyday till they’ve sent off their uni applications. Whereas others are just as clueless as when they first set foot into the college.

The lost ones wonder in and ask for help, and you can tell their lost by the bunny like look in their eyes, and I get excited because I genuinely want to help them. But sadly, this is how most of the conversations go:

Student: Uh miss? I need help with my personal statement.

Me: You’re in the right place. I can help you with that.

Student: Ah ok. Thanks. Umm so what should I do?

Me: Firstly, have you finished writing your personal statement?

Student: Uuuuh I haven’t started it yet.

Me:…then what do you expect me to work on?

And this is when it hits me: they probably expect you to write it all for them.


Me: I can’t help you really unless I have something to work on. You have to put in the effort and give me something to look at. 

So with majority of the students that have come my way, the conversation always turns out this way. It’s worrying to know that a lot of these kids want to apply for medicine, law, bio-med, radiology, accounting etc, but they can’t even say that they have one words worth of a personal statement.

I know I sound like some pensioner, but I can’t help but say ‘tisk, tisk, kids these days! Back in my day, students did their own personal statements and got on with it

There are roughly 800 students at my college applying for university, but only a handful have actually studied hard, achieved the grades, and typed up enough personal statement drafts to make up for the slackers.

These kids really are children trapped in big bodies. Once they leave college, they won’t know what hit them till it’s too late.