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Everyone has their own reason for going to uni. In this article, three uni students share their stories about their expectations.
© University of Reading

We talk to a few prospective students about their thoughts about going to university. Read their stories here…


‘When I was younger, I wanted to go to uni and study nursing – because that was what my mum did. As I got older, I realised that not only do I feel sick at the sight of blood, I’m terrible at science, so nursing probably isn’t for me. Growing up in an African household, university often seems like the only option if you want to be successful. Although I know this isn’t true, I’d still like to go to university because I want the experience and freedom that comes with it, and it will probably widen my career opportunities.’


‘After I was diagnosed with Epilepsy at the age of 13, I’ve had a rocky journey, leading me to feel less certain about whether I’d be able to cope not being so close to family. The fear of not being accepted began to haunt me, and I didn’t see how I would fit in.
Since visiting unis I have decided that I will go. My disability is only an extra hurdle I will have to jump on the way and doesn’t have control over my life. As I have visited open days and completed my UCAS application for a course in Mathematics and Computer Science, I’m looking forward to the new found freedom I’ll have as I go to uni. I am excited to meet new people and make friends for life. The only thing I really want to know is details on the support universities can offer.’


‘As someone who belongs to a family who has never been to uni, or even made it as far as A-Levels, my natural enthusiasm for academics made my mum keen for me to remain in love with academia. My ambition to give my family a better life and my goal to hopefully run my own astronautical engineering company are what has encouraged me to go to university.
I have a lot of goals, and getting a degree is going to help me take one step towards achieving these goals. I even intend to get a Masters so that I can become a chartered engineer. Since my family knows nothing about university, I’ve had to seek help elsewhere and I’ve had to look for my own opportunities to show my enthusiasm for my subject. Although it’s been difficult doing a lot of it myself, I can’t wait to finally go to uni.’


Going to university has always been a prominent decision in my life as my father didn’t go university as he didn’t have high enough grades, nor my mother as she had been diagnosed with arthritis during her A-levels making her unable to take most of her exams. For my mum, she would have loved the opportunity to go to university, however due to her health, was unable to. My parents have always taught me to fight to be the best that I can and grab every opportunity that comes my way. At the end of the day I always want to make my parents proud, hence my decision to go to university and thrive and have the best.


‘For me, going to uni is the chance to start a completely new life. Having a difficult upbringing led to me wanting to go out there and gain complete independence, and just do something for myself. Neither of my parents, nor anyone else in my family has gone to university before, and so being the first one in my family to go would bring a huge sense of pride.
My career aspirations have fluctuated a huge amount over the past few years, from wanting to study volcanoes, to being a doctor, to finally settling on studying Philosophy. Everyone around me has been incredibly supportive, even if some people think that Philosophy may not open many doors (spoiler alert; it does!). Having done some university experiences, I am incredibly excited for both the social and academic aspects of uni. I am also really looking forward to doing something for myself, and taking my first steps into independence!’

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© University of Reading
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