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Going to university, studying a journalism degree, university drinking culture

The Daunting Decision To Go To University

The other day I experienced a minor midlife crisis as I had the realisation that I am going to be starting university in 3 months. I will be moving two hours up North to Manchester and entering a completely new chapter in my life and as exciting as that is, I am absolutely petrified.

There are many aspects of university life that scare me, such as living away from home, living with people I’ve never met before and the fact that my life is about to completely change.

I’m hoping I am not the only person feeling like this and there are some readers who can actually relate to what I am writing.

A lot of people go to university; most young people are told at school that university is the only route out of sixth form. That your only path to success is by going to university, spending thousands of pounds in order to achieve a degree. Which is not true at all, there are so many other options out there other than higher education. At eighteen, it’s rare that you know for certain what you want to do. However if you do, a degree is perfect.

I know that I want to be a journalist and I have done for a while now; there isn’t anything else that I could ever see myself doing.In September I am going to Manchester Metropolitan University to study Multimedia Journalism. It isn’t the best Journalism course in the country, nor is it the most prestigious university. However out of all the courses I researched it appealed the most to me and the university itself gave me great vibes as somewhere I could study for the next three years.

I’m excited about the course, I’m more than excited to be studying and learning about a subject that I am so passionate about. Therefore I refuse to apologise for the fact I am not so excited about the real reason a lot of people go to uni.

I’m not a huge clubber, I love going out with my friends to drink and dance every so often but I know for sure that I couldn’t handle it every single night. I went through that phase of being obsessive, in awe of going out and regularly getting drunk a few years ago and I feel totally over it now.

University seems to have developed some kind of insane drinking culture, of which I find very slightly daunting.

Many people tell you that university is just one huge party, don’t get me wrong I love a party but I also love to look after myself. I like to go to the gym, have a healthy body and therefore a healthy mind. When my body clock is all over the place and I’m lacking in sleep I tend to feel a lot more anxious because I lose my routine, and I’m sure I am not the only person that feels like this.

I read a really eye-opening blog post a year ago written by Olivia Purvis (What Olivia Did) about why she doesn’t drink. She wrote about how people couldn’t believe that she would make the choice not to drink and how she was constantly pressured into drinking. She quotes Jameela Jamil who once said  “I don’t eat fish, either, yet no one’s ever tried to ram a mackarel down my throat” which is inexplicably true.

Yes, I do love a cocktail or a glass of wine but I also love getting up early the next day for the gym and not drinking away all of my money, and despite what people think I don’t think I am superior or better than anyone else because of it. That is just my choice.

To me, university is about studying a subject I love, making friends that I will hopefully have for life, learning to live independently, dealing with change, and growing up. However most importantly it is going to be about having fun the way I want to, whether it involves a cocktail or a cup of tea in my hand it makes no difference either way.

It’s terrifying yet so invigorating and I don’t think I’ll ever be prepared, but I do think that I am going to learn so much about myself.

I’m ready for the adventure.

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