My First Year at University As An ‘Older’ Student

As I write this post I am in the middle of my summer holidays, something I thought I had left behind a few years ago. I never thought going to university was for me, for starters a) I only have NVQ qualifications not A Levels so I didn’t think a university would take me on and b) I never knew what I wanted to take, I always thought an English degree but was never 100% as to which one.

Being an older student I was definitely scared that I had left it too late, being in my early twenties the majority of people I went to school with had already graduated and were working on their careers. Everyone is in their own lane and for me and my life this was definitely not too late, I realised when I started the course.


One of my first assessments – the theme was cultures and I chose Mexican Day of the Dead

The course I chose was Media Makeup. My blog had ignited my love for beauty and makeup, and I wanted to learn more about this industry. The university itself is actually within a college. I accepted my place for this course two weeks before it started. At the time I had applied for this course and a social media apprenticeship on the same night. I thought that which ever I don’t get I’ll go for the other. Luckily I got an interview for both the HND and apprenticeship, and weirdly enough both interviews were in the same week. A week later I found I didn’t get the apprenticeship and so fate led me to media makeup.

I chose to go back into education as the NVQ I am trained in isn’t something I want to do forever. Plus finding a job outside of something I was trained in proved to be difficult unless it was retail. I was so surprised when my application was accepted as I had almost bitterly accepted that the chance of going to university had been taken away after going through an abusive relationship and dropping out of college.


One of my fave assessments I did in first year  – the theme was evolution and I chose to focus on human evolution – specifically the evolution of Egyptians.

This opportunity was one I knew I had to take, quitting my full time job was scary. Going into the unknown was terrifying. I was so nervous I would have made a big mistake, that I wouldn’t do well and fail. But thankfully these negative thoughts didn’t come to fruition.

I have had the most amazing first year, I have loved every stressful minute of it. I have met new people who have become my friends. I have learnt so much about myself, one big lesson being that it is never too late and no matter what has happened in your past it never has to define your future.


This was my last assessment of my first year – the theme was phobias, the one I was given was snakes.

Whilst I thought I would be able to blog, do YouTube videos, work part time and get all my uni work done, I definitely underestimated how much time this course would consume. But nonetheless it has been a great experience and I am so proud of myself for doing this course. The results for my first year is a distinction, so I had no reason to worry about not doing well or making the wrong choice!

Life has a strange way of working things out. By doing this course my mental health has improved as I don’t feel stuck anymore and I am doing something that I chose to do, rather than an NVQ I took during an awful time in my life. Thank you so much for reading, until next time


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