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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
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Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 04:57 PM

So, i've always been a good student, who loves learning and works hard. I've recently finished college, getting straight A's.

I have been accepted to study social work in York. The uni i've always wanted to go to. The course was hard to get in. And i was so excited when I got accepted.

But then I took a year out. Spent 6 months volunteering in an african orphanage. And i've never felt so happy. It gave me a purpose. My ED improved tenfold. No longer depressed, and I've never felt so truly happy.

Then I returned home. And i totally regret it. I'm unhappy again, my eatings going down the drain. Nothing feels right anymore.

More than anything I want to go back to the orphanage, spend a few years there...


So heres my question: Go To Uni...or Go to Africa?

I can always go to uni after a few years, re-apply? Or am I wasting an opportunity to do a career? Which in all fairness feels rather pointless in comparrison to what I was doing?

HELP!!!


   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 05:02 PM

You could always go to Uni and have a plan to go back once you have your degree. Give you something to aim for...?
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 05:23 PM

Thanks Vlora. I was considering that. But 3 years is a hell of a long time. The children I grew to love would have grown up. And more than that. Social work degree gave me the opportunity to help children...but it feels almost pointless when I could be doing the same out there...but for less money.

But then what? When i come back to England... in 1,2,5 years time... what do i do... uni then? what if i dont get an offer again?


   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 05:29 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xsecretsx View Post
Thanks Vlora. I was considering that. But 3 years is a hell of a long time. The children I grew to love would have grown up. And more than that. Social work degree gave me the opportunity to help children...but it feels almost pointless when I could be doing the same out there...but for less money.

But then what? When i come back to England... in 1,2,5 years time... what do i do... uni then? what if i dont get an offer again?
You could possibly do the deferred entry option. This lets you keep your place in Uni but will give you a year in Africa which will give you more time and experience to make the decision. Then if you decide to stay there you can decline the place in Uni, but if you want to go back after a year then you can and still have a place there as a safety net.

Last edited by Melody Pond; March 22nd 2010 at 06:51 PM.
   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 05:39 PM

If you can't do the deferred entry, you could also take a year out after your first year at uni, get a taste of uni and see if you like it, if you do, then you have a break in the middle.
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 06:48 PM

It sounds like the real issue isn't which to do it's what to do when you come back. You can either go to school or Africa now, if you go to Africa, you will come home at some point and you'll have to get some type of job which would be made easier with a degree. If you go to school now, you'll have to wait to go to Africa, but coming home might be easier career- wise. If you're ED is a major deciding factor is there a way to manage it while going to school? It sounds like Rachel's suggestion is the best option, but it's up to you.


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 09:31 PM

I would follow your dream and go to Africa again. It looks like going there made you really happy. So I would do the Africa thing for a while.
   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 11:16 PM

You need to do whats best for you. If going back to Africa is best, then go for it. But remember, schooling is important too!



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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 22nd 2010, 11:55 PM

i would not go to Uni unless you are 100% committed to it and it's definitely what you want to do. if you think it'll make you happy to go back then do it. you only live once!


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 23rd 2010, 01:18 AM

I agree with everyone else but on the flip side, trust me when I say 3 years at university is no where near as long as you think. It's not long enough.
I feel like I started uni yesterday and ive been here two years now. I cant believe it's been two years! Jesus. Yeah. My point is if youre thinking of putting it off because it seems like such a long time, I just wanted to let you know it will be over before you know it.
University is an experience in itself and one I highly recommend.
   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 23rd 2010, 01:22 AM

Africa will always be there... having a degree under your belt can get you far- it can even HELP you in Africa! Personally, I think you should try uni first. You are already accepted- it's much easier than college and such. Just try. Take classes you like, maybe do some volunteer work in New York and then see how you feel.


   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 23rd 2010, 01:36 AM

Follow your dream! You only live once!!!


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 23rd 2010, 04:41 AM

I suggest going to university because once you come back from Africa, then what? If you want a decent-paying job, you'll more than likely need a university degree. Also, you can study topics related to your work in Africa and you may be able to get higher-paying jobs for working in Africa also. Besides, after you've come out of university, Africa is Africa, it's not going to vanish nor will it change terribly much.

You may loose any friends you had in Africa while at university but that's life, you lose friends all the time and people can get over it, find a new friend and life goes on.
   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 23rd 2010, 05:00 AM

Hi there,

I'd definitely say go to university. Your education is really important. Perhaps you could study something (like social work) and then apply for a job that allows you to travel around the world and help the less-fortunate, like those in Africa. That way, you're doing what you love, have an education, and are making a living. Who wouldn't want a life like that?

I also ask you to consider summer breaks. In university, at least in Canada, you get four months of summer break. Perhaps you can plan a trip to Africa during one of those breaks. Or, you can speak with your university's administrative staff and see if they can hook up some sort of exchange program that is built in with your degree.

It's great to see that you have found something you're passionate about. Not many people find that so be grateful for it. However, you must realize that there are ways to go about fulfilling these dreams - from a realistic point-of-view. Going to Africa during the summer holidays or as an exchange as a part of your degree are merely two ways. By having education under your belt, you could do much more in the long-run.

Good luck.


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 24th 2010, 01:36 AM

University isnt the 'be all and end all'!!
I hate the fact people are making it seem like that. Its not anymore, 10-20 years ago it was the big thing, but anybody who gets grades in 6 form can get in some sort of Uni these days, in the UK anyway!
Infact having some experience doing something like that will help you AND is a cheaper option than university.


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 24th 2010, 01:45 AM

If you want my opinion, I think that uni might be best because you're already accepted and it will be great to have your schooling done, so you can go to Africa and you won't have to worry about coming back and going to school. Africa is always going to be there, you can go anytime. I just think that if you go through uni first, then you'll have something to work for and look forward to, and that's always nice. Sometimes it's great to "save the best for last".


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 24th 2010, 05:18 PM

Thanks for all your views. My minds still in turmoil though.
The issue with taking a year out after 1st year uni, is that the course i'm on doesnt allow it. I know uni's important... but... i'm scared that i'll get really bad again, with no one there to watch me...keep an eye on my wieght and things. Plus, am i going to cope on a degree desighned to help others? When i'm still a wreck myself? Like, in a way i'm sorted...but under a thin layer?

Is it possible to defer your entry again? How would I go about this?


   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 24th 2010, 06:11 PM

No, you can't defer your entry for a second year.

I would also recommend you go to Uni this year, but for more practical reasons. University spaces are declining and applications are increasing. For September, fees are £3,250 a year and will be fixed for the duration of your course. When the new government gets into power they will increase to around £7,000+ a year. The chances of you getting in again, after having already dropped out once, are probably decreasing with each year you don't apply -- is it 50,000 or 100,000 people who have not got places this year? Either way, it is getting more difficult and more costly. I think you should go.

If you are concerned about your eating disorder, why don't you look into the student support services at York and see if you can set things up to help you when you get there? Moving to University is very stressful and you would need to make sure your weight and eating stay stable.

After your degree you could return to Africa. With a degree in social work I can promise you that you will be able a LOT more good than you could without one. Rather than volunteering in an Orphange you could work to perminantly change things. You could even live out there for years, my parents lived in Africa for over 10 years and I spent the first few years of my life there.

Good luck


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 25th 2010, 04:47 AM

A lot of universities have exchange programs.
The one I'm at as long as you get good grades after your second year there are a whole bunch of optional countries you can do your exchange in, including Africa.
Like other people said, school does go by quickly. I'm in my second year right now and am almost done the semester and it seems like I just came back to school a week ago.
But school isn't for everyone. If you really don't think you'll be happy in it, don't do it.
   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 26th 2010, 04:57 AM

You could possibly go to the Uni and go to Africa during the summers. It's just an idea, but I hope it helps.


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 26th 2010, 05:28 AM

I'm the kind to usually play things safe, so I'd go to Uni first and get your degree and then go to Africa.


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 26th 2010, 11:47 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by her_beautiful_mistake View Post
No, you can't defer your entry for a second year.

I would also recommend you go to Uni this year, but for more practical reasons. University spaces are declining and applications are increasing. For September, fees are £3,250 a year and will be fixed for the duration of your course. When the new government gets into power they will increase to around £7,000+ a year. The chances of you getting in again, after having already dropped out once, are probably decreasing with each year you don't apply -- is it 50,000 or 100,000 people who have not got places this year? Either way, it is getting more difficult and more costly. I think you should go.


After your degree you could return to Africa. With a degree in social work I can promise you that you will be able a LOT more good than you could without one. Rather than volunteering in an Orphange you could work to perminantly change things. You could even live out there for years, my parents lived in Africa for over 10 years and I spent the first few years of my life there.

Good luck

Shit... i never knew about the cost change... that makes a huge difference. I've heard several places, that it is possible to re-defer entry....

I guess i know i should go to uni... but my heart sinks at the thought...


   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 26th 2010, 03:08 PM

I'm pretty sure that at a lot of places it is possible to defer entry twice. I know someone who did it, but maybe it depends on the individual circumstances. Maybe not for certain very competitive courses but ring up the uni and ask? That's probably the best way to know for sure.


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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 26th 2010, 04:11 PM

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I'm pretty sure that at a lot of places it is possible to defer entry twice. I know someone who did it, but maybe it depends on the individual circumstances. Maybe not for certain very competitive courses but ring up the uni and ask? That's probably the best way to know for sure.
Thanks elle. I'll contact the uni direct.

Where can i get info in potential university price increases?


   
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Re: Dilema: Uni, or live my dream...? - March 26th 2010, 05:08 PM

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Originally Posted by xsecretsx View Post
Thanks elle. I'll contact the uni direct.

Where can i get info in potential university price increases?
Newspapers

I'm also going to throw it out there that after another year you'll probably find it even harder than you would now. I think volunteering during the summer is the best plan. Remember you will have 2-3 months off.


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