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what are the other options?
youll feel differently after the summer
i really really do. it's just i don't know if i'm going to be able to.
of course youll be able for it. stop worrying so much tilly, not good for you!
i know plenty of people who went to university and have got good jobs as a result. but i know plenty of people who also have rubbish jobs much like i do, yet they're crippled with debt they picked up in their student years.
doesn't mean they shouldn't have gone, of course. i just think it's more important to take into consideration if you actually want to study in the first place.
the real value remains the same as when you took it out, supposedly. Student loans are pretty much the best loan you can ever get, you only pay them back when you are earning enough to pay them back and they really have little impact on anything.
This country has a skills shortage, to stay competitive we need 40% of people to have degrees apparently, trouble is most degrees are pretty useless and I dont see how they are going to get people to take ones that offer more practical marketable skills without limiting peoples freedom to choose what interests them
i pretty much entirely agree with what you're saying though.
"Now ironically, all these banks, all these lenders are in debt - in a small way due to all the stupid students borrowing too much"
basic grasp of the facts fail.
which will take half the fun out of it. If you study what you're interested in you've no real guarantee of a job that will help you pay off that debt and be 'better' unless you're interested in something worth a lot of money.
I'm being vague here because I honestly have little idea what those courses might be but it's a pretty sure-fire bet that Computer Science is still a course that will allow you to get a nicely paying job out of blocks and so forth...whether you'll enjoy the university experience is another matter.
This is what happens when you specialise university courses. If your only choices are science, maths, English, History then it's about something else and no one can say, "Oh we need a degree in applied forensic African journalism for this job. Oh and the wage is 14K a year and a warm feeling of middle-class satisfaction. That do you?"
Ive gotten jobs i had little or no skills in cos i had a decent degree from a decent uni.
+ uni is above having fun and meeting cool new people. you dont do either when your working + u get freedom.
heres the how it breaks down.
- go if its truely a decent uni you have been accepted to. Not just cos its apparently good for your course.
- the course you have chosen is academic in nature and not just writting essays about shit all day. eg. tourism, photography, computer game design.
- the uni is more than 100 miles away from home in a decent city.
if all the above criteria are met you'll have an awesome time and it'll be cost justifiable within a 10 year time frame of graduating.
i didn't go at 18 and i'm eternally glad. i wouldn't have enjoyed it then and would have totally screwed up. i'm now 25 and i've pretty much decided that i'm going to go next year, and i'm really looking forward to it :)
i appreciate you probably got a job, but did you leave home or move to a city or something?
then i moved to london. i've been here for five years now, and i've enjoyed it a lot. to be honest it's also taken me that long to work out what i want to do!
what're you applying to do? one of us! one of us!
you get the benefits of working having money and doing what you want for a few years, then you know more what youre interested in and what you want to do, and just as everyone you know slowly come to the horrifying realisation that they will have to work forever you get to skip off to uni. I wish I hadnt gone straight after a-levels I was clueless. You also get more financial support as a mature student.
University is overrated, really it is
But there is no other way to get the level of knowledge.
Necessary evil for me
its certainly not been a problem with work. In the jobs that I've worked up through, experience has been the biggest boon to getting hired. I really regret not having enjoyed those years as much as my other mates though. I reckon that its more for the lolz for a lot of people, although I guess it depends on what you study. If you're after being a doctor/teacher/architect then its obvs the best way forward. Otherwise look into the line of work that you're after, and see if its the best way to get a foot in the door. I don't know many people who regret being a student though.
then went to uni when I was older. Because right after school I wasn't sure what I wanted to do at all and didn't fancy A-levels. So I messed about doing diffrent courses at college then eventualy quit and found a job and apprenticeship that looked really interesting. That took about 4 years or so and gave me a hell of alot of experiance and qualifications. Then when it finished and there wasn't to many jobs about I went to uni because I thought it might suit me. I didnt really enjoy it as much as working but I did end up getting some kind of degree so it was alright. I was kinda the only person my age on my uni course mind everyone else was either right out of school or older so there wasn't many people to relate to and do the usual uni stuff. If I went when I was younger I probibly would have enjoyed the uni experiance more but then I was having fun at that time anyway doing other things so who cares.
That's what I did. Well not quite in the same way you're going about things. (I'm having really bad deja vu writing this...) I did A-Levels, didn't go to uni, got a shit job that I fcking hated, then two years later decided to go back to study electronics part time whilst finding a job in the industry to support it. In the second year of my ONC I got picked up by the Control Systems company, who I'm still with, as a trainee design engineer. I'm now finishing the first year of a HNC, one more year after that, then I can top up to a HND in a year after which I plan to go to a polytechnic for a year to top my HND up to a degree (making me Mr. L. George BEng, swish!) before fucking off around the world stopping in at French Polynesia to get tattoed in a traditional method before ending up in Holland where I'll saty for at least five years while this country destroys itself and then is hopefully starting to pick up again.
So yeah, in conclusion, engineering.
I've just walked into a really great job designing concert halls. And earning more than my parents. Not bad. My degree was really really hard though compared to a lot of others though.
A not so good rate of degree but I basically walk straight into a very fucking good job that I am now erning double what my mum earns. I'll attest tut the people I know that did degrees have all got jobs but they all did degrees that have pratical equivalents : I did an engineering degree to become an engineer, not an arts degree to do somethng else you know?
I'm changing from being a design engineer to be a test/commissioning engineer, just because I prefer doing practical work than sitting infront of a computer in an office (especially when designing is only about 10% of the work, the rest being phone calls, emails, method statement, risk assesments blah blah). Basically with an electrical/electronics degree and experience in commissioning, testing and design I'll never be out of a decent paid job. There will be oppurtunities to work all over the world. I've a friend who is a commissioning engineer, left our company to earn £270k on an 18 month contract in Qatar. These oppurtunities aren't rare. Even in this country despite the "recession" engineering is booming, and apprentices are being sought. Especially in the oil/gas industry at the moment, and nuclear power. I don't know where this chap lives, but Sizewell are offereing very good apprenticeships at the moment, I've even thought about leaving my job and going there.
I did a Civils BEng straight after A Levels (cos it was the best fit for my A Levels). The social aspects of Uni were, for me, totally overrated. It was neither esoteric conversations as aprt of the 'inner circle' in wood-panelled rooms, or kerazy arts student antics. My uni was full of management, engineering and science bods.
Worked with a big ol contractor for a sandwich year. Scraped through the degree. The company took me on. On good moneys (i.e. my starting salary was more than what my folks were earning).
But after a year, looking around, I could see that a vast majority of the folk I was working alonside were either divorced, considered it normal to lodge through the week and then drive across the country to see your wife 'as a treat' on a Wednesday. Plus it was 8am-6pm and took an hour to drive to.
Call me a sissy, or call it a quarter life crisis, but that wasn't what I fancied doing for the next 40 years.
So I went back to Uni to do a BA in product design (which is what I wanted to do all along), aged 22 or so. Didn't really mingle with the uni folk socially cos I had my own life going on, but I was young enough to engage with em during classes.
Really enjoyed the BA and got a good grade.
My current occupation (architectural technician) relies perhaps more on my BEng degree (and on some temp/part-time draughtsman work that I wangled based on my BEng), but I chose it on the basis of what I'd enjoyed overall during the two degrees I did.
And without taking a step back from the treadmill, I'd not have had the confidence to go for what I'm currently doing. I'd just have slowly come to a less satisfactory compromise.
I'd maybe consider doing more Higher Education in the near future (but p'raps via the OU) in a non-career oriented subject.
My gf is similar-ish. She's fully trained in Pharmacy but has gone down to 3 days a week in order to concentrate on a part time Textiles degree.
>My advice? Do what you enjoy. If you enjoy it, you'll want to do it. So chances are you'll achieve some sort of success in the long run.
There's a lot of truth in the saying that education is wasted on the young.
The only thing that stops you from doing Uni later on, when you're better positioned to appreciate it will be financial commitments to a mortgage or a family, etc. IT's VERY difficult to step back from the trappings of material wealth and percieved relative financial security.
PS: I haven't done so, but the notion of "travelling" appears, to me, more like an excuse for a holiday. Nice if you can afford it, but somewhat overrated, it would seem.
PPS: My comments about "tracelling" come across as bitter and slightly jealous, don't they. Much like those who didn't go to uni when they talk about those that did.
PPPS: Non-uni folki might well go on about similar earnings etc. Fair do's. But does that include pension contributions and savings? Relying on the state for a pension any time in the future is a bad strategy.
if in a few years you want to go to university you can.
Before or after tax? Regardless. Doubt all you want, but I do, thanks.
Might not equal your 2/3 thousand DiS posts a month, but I'll just have to come to terms with that somehow.
going straight into work, or doing an apprenticeship etc etc etc
look, university isn't the be all and end all. yes it's a good experience if it's your kind of thing, and yes having a degree can open a heck of a lot of doors to you, depending on what the degree is and what the doors are to an extent. example: i did my first degree in, well, a pretty non-vocational subject. it didn't get me a job. it DID, however, mean i was qualified enough to do a masters degree in something vocational - so i can get into a career where, to progress, i'd have needed the degree anyway.
but you don't have to go to uni straight away, anyway. you can delay it a year, or three, or ten, go when you need to go. or wait, do a part-time degree; sure it'll take longer but you'll get the qualification and will probably be earning cash at the same time.
and you don't necessarily need to go to uni - depending what you want to do with your life. plenty of jobs don't need degrees.
but the Uni option will obviously pin a huge tail of debt on your arse.
I've decided not to go as I wouldn't get anything out of the course I wanted to do (Music Tech related), after speaking to people who'd been there into their last year and people in their first years it seems that they've either not learnt anything new or have gone over the previous material/modules that they did in college or 6th form, except that they've been dragged out for a longer period and that the lecturers generally don't have time for individuals as they have to teach 300-500 students as opposed to a college tutor who can make time for you as they teach up to about a hundred at the very most (in most cases it's less). But I can, and have learnt this shit off my own back, so the need to go to University for me was an obvious choice.
Don't waste any time, experience and a portfolio of work counts far more than a shitty degree...But of course it's all relative to what your career path may be.
However, now I'm working a job which is about as far removed from engineering/producing as anything could be. But I enjoy it nonetheless, I don't have a lot of spare time anymore but y'know, it's a choice. Would you rather have some dough in the bank or be skint as fuck, burning the candle-wick at both ends every other night further plunging yourself into an insurmountable debt?
Related to what Martbowski mentioned before in this thread:
The educational system literally cajoles you into mindlessly sorting your UCAS shit out as soon as possible that it doesn't give people time to even think about what they could be doing, and not only that there's hardly any alternatives that are even touched upon or highlighted to people leaving school such as apprenticeships.
'The Uni Lifestyle' - Is hardly different to living on your own, with the exception that you might be living with some utter shitey-arsed cunt who you hate.
I decided not to go to university, there was nothing else to do so I bailed and am gonna end up doing maths, nothing excites me less than the idea of the uni lifestyle or doing maths for a few solid years, at least it might get me some money eventually.
And I came here so i could get skills and figure out what i wanted to do for the rest of my life and to move away from home, not for the qualification as such.
you get out what you put in and that's what this thread neglects a little bit. i went to university as an excuse to move somewhere new - my course was interesting (English Literature) butthe main appeal about university for me was that it opens you up to a lot of opportunities you might never get otherwise, if you look for them - i've been getting into gig promotion and i know people whove gone far after joining radio/tv societies, and are setting themselves up nicely for future opportunities. if you spend three years just drinking, having fun and living the 'uni life', you will just get a harsh wake up call after you graduate and have to get a generic job, but if you apply yourself and look for and take every opportunity that comes your way, you can set yourself up nicely and discover some job paths you love and hadn't previously considered or thought possible.
thats another option than 'not going to university'.
AM I RIGHT?
And still have a crap job, the industry I studied in, journalism, is on it's arse and now I'm not sure I want to do it anyway, I enjoyed uni but have a shit load of debt now
and studied Illustration. I messed up my course, didn't learn anything (the tutors were just crap)and, over all, didn't really get much out of it. I haven't been able to get a related job since graduating last year but it does depend what degree you do. Its not all doom and gloom though, I met my boyfriend at uni...:)
that there are positives to going to uni, no matter what course it is. for instance, it must make moving to a new city a very different experience to moving and finding a job.
of all my mates, the one who hasn't gone to uni still lives with his mum. i wouldn't want to do that.
Was when I realised that I was in an interview for working in an HSBC Mortgage Service Centre, and at that point, I thought "Learning stuff is more than about achieving, its about becoming the person you want to be". Among people in my lowely paid team now are 2 doctors (one in philosophy, another in English Literature) and anoher with a masters. We don't care for our lowely careers, but I don't think any of us would regret the opportunity of learning.
why would you want to miss out on the opportunity to go to uni. It's the best fun of your life. are people here really that miserable that the idea of 3 years of hanging out with amazing people doing amazing stuff is not appealing?
some people, some people
if you had a shit time at uni
i'm going to go next year, and i suspect i'll enjoy it a lot. this doesn't change that you come across as a tool in that post.
the reason you consider the people amazing is because you are them, you abject failure of a person
you have no idea do you. i don't even know where to start. i think there is no hope for you. good luck
a beanie you bellend - wake up grandad. you have no idea about me. you obviously had a terrible time at uni because you're a miserable prick
it all seems so serious and big when youre in upper sixth (as i was until january) but when you have a bit of time away from the stress of it all youll get a better perspective and realise what your priorities are. theres nothing to lose putting it off for a bit either is there?
...plus if you can, do an engineering degree or something both challenging and specific. Don't do English or Media studies, they're a waste of time.
If I was 18 again, I'd move to a big city and work for a couple of years (Or even abroad and work. I'm not sure what 'travelling around the world' does for people, I'd prefer to actually live in a different culture myself - but that's just me!). After this you can then decide what to do. University was just an excuse to get away from home for me, which is pathetic.
If you're not sure now, don't get channelled into studying... leave it a bit until you're sure. Or more sure. This is all subjective, but I know a lot of people who wish they'd delayed/rejected university.
If so, I love you
Fantastic song, fantastic album. Venus is one of my favourite songs of all-time.
Depends what you want to do, surely? No point doing an engineering degree (or whatever) if you don't want to work in that area.
that a BEng in Enginering is accepted more widely as a measure of academic ability than a BA in Media Studies.
That's not to say you shouldn't do a BA in Media Studies. Just that you should only do a BA in Media Studies if you want to "do media".
The classic parent line of "something to fall back on" has some truth in it. But doing an engineering degree without any genuine enthusiasm for the subject will be a slog unless you're a a bit gifted.
My source? Me. Having done a BEng and a BA. Few people are impressed with my BA (Hons) 2:1 whereas the pass in BEng (no Hons) gets more cred. And justifiably so, I'd say. The BEng was rock solid in parts. The BA was mostly a cinch.
School's been shelved for the past couple years though as I moved to England to travel/work. I don't regret it as I believe it helped me "grow up" a fair bit. I know I don't want to work in a shop my whole so eventually I'll need to go back to school. but I want to have some money saved up rather than jump into debt. It'll be at least a few more years before I have any letters after my name.
The only bad bit is I'm watching my younger brother graduate before me!
I would have gone back to school and done whatever to give me a chance to go to a better uni. or done a gap year to give me a broader outlook.
It was too easy for me to choose a nice comfy uni, and then sit around achieving nothing for three years and steal a degree on a few weeks swatting. It did get me my first two jobs though.
I do agree though with meeting interesting people, that was definitely the plus for me.
from JG Ballard's wiki page:
'Encouraged by the publication of his story and realising that clinical medicine would not leave him time to write, Ballard abandoned his medical studies in 1952 and went to the University of London to read English Literature. However, he was asked to leave at the end of the year.'
Turned out alright for him.
and dropped out in my second year. I really really regret going when I did because I didn't really know what I wanted to do and just went along with it because I thought the other options was doing data entry for the rest of my life which is clearly not the case.
So yeah holding back a while can sometimes be the best thing.
the chances are you'll probably not be able to walk into a job you love with just a-levels (most people with degrees struggle to do this). So - work 3/4 days a week to afford to live, and either (a) volunteer/try and find an internship somewhere a couple of days a week or (b) do Open University.
If all goes to plan you'll be in a job you love by the time your peers have graduated and won't be £15K-£20K in debt.
Nail on head.
The "doing something to get you into the field you like" could be part-time Uni or whatevers, but this kinda split seems like a good option to consider.
after crashing out with what can only be described as a 1/5th life crisis at 19 (I started at 17). The person up there that said about the UCAS thing being foisted upon you as soon as you *think* about doing your Highers/A Levels is so true - it's engineered to make you think that there is *no alternative* BUT to go to uni.
Not going to uni does nt mean you are thick.
Not going to uni as soon as you leave school does not make you a failure
Leaving school and finding an apprenticeship/job does not mean you have "wasted" your young life
Unis will always be there. They're not going anywhere. You only get one life so don't do anything becuase you think it's expected.
I went to uni, got a good degree and it has done FUCK ALL for me. To some extent I honestly wish I had learned some kind of "time served" thing or gone down the vocational route as opposed to doing a Politics degree becuase "I like current affairs". I'd have honestly been better off taking out a subscription teh the Guardian for 4 years, it'd have saved me a lot more money.
I now have a (still rising) student loan to pay off of £16.5K and it does leave a bitter taste when you look at it and thin "all that money...and for what"?
Other factors include where you live. If you live in a teeny village and you want to move and have a social safety net and not go straght into a city where you know no-one and start a job then in that case I would advise Uni. Otherwise, I'd honestly give it a bit of time. You're probably young enough to intern in some cool places and work up (god I hate that phrase). I don't know where you live but if you intend to move away from home, just think carefully. Uni can be a depressing place if you don't meet a magic social network of friends and if your heart's also not in your course then to be frank, it's a waste of time and money.
Massive tuppence worth over. PHEW.
Before that he left home at 16 to join Esso's merchant navy fleet. He was a captain by the time he left and had been anywhere there was a port.
Uni's not always the best option and it's becoming very expensive. My younger brother is finishing this summer and owes c£20k which is a scary amount of money. He's thinking of doing a PhD too, but someone may be funding him to do it.
he was earning way over 50k but now is unemployed. Life is magical in that way. 5 years ago when i graduated and went to get a job writing software I was told to retrain as a plumber now the skills are in demand.
+ 20k at base interest rates is really not that bad. Esspecially when modern culture is to not class mortgages with much higher rates as bad debt. Esspecially as there is no consequences except the compound for not repaying it.
my point is of all the debt you can choose to have in life its by far the least consequetial.
I'd rather be 20k in student debt
than 4k on a credit card or 100k+ on a house.
i earn about 1900 after tax and NI and about £110 of that goes to pay off the minimum student loan installment.
when i was on 26k it was about £70 per month.
Also its worth noting that the interest rate is typically less than you'll get on an ISA so financially it makes more sense to offset your loan than to pay it off in one big lump.
eg. I have about 8k left to pay and I have that in savings but it makes no sense to just pay it off cos i'd loose more money long term as the interest im getting on my savings is more than the interest im being charged for the debt.
you might want to return that degree and reevaluate your common sense.
but I've got roughly the 4k as an OD + credit card.
2 years left of the 'old loan-style loans' (from my first degree) @ £135 pm.
Feck knows how many years left of the 'new tax-style loans' (from my second degree) @ £70 pm.
Half share of £800 pm repayments on a flat bought 2 years ago for £126k with a 25yr 100% mortgage (not quite in negative equity at the mo, just 0 equity).
30 years old w/ 25k wages and the above obligations.
Yeah, I'd rather not have the 4k owing, but the SLs will melt away soon enough, and the mortgage is sound in the long term, too.
Really do feel as if I should start having some proper 'disposable' income sometime soon, though, rather than everything going on bills, debts and a few pints.
that in life debt is normally inevitable in some form but this kinda of debt (student loan) is the least scary and consequential debt you'll probably ever come across.
Most my friends don't see the student loan debt as a problem. Credit cards and overdrafts lead to much bigger problems.