We would all like to believe that students choose to go to university to study a degree that leads them into a career of their choice, or at least to further themselves academically in a specific subject of their choice. Although this may be the case for some students, for other students there are different reasons for why they are going to university:
- They are expected to – by parents, teachers and society
- They want to explore the students lifestyle – partying, drinking, etc.
- They want to move away from home
- The want a fresh start – a new life
- To delay going into employment
“I went because my Sixth Form never really gave us any other option. Everyone applied, everyone had UCAS lessons, everyone had HE interviews. There was just nothing for those who didn’t want to go, and I felt I’d be letting everyone down if I didn’t, so I just chose my favourite subject (Psychology), a couple of local universities, and applied.
I am very happy there, and will be sad to leave, but I won’t pretend that it’s what I always wanted to do.”
“ [I want to go to university] to gain independence, to get away from my overbearing mother and to meet new people. Also, it was expected of me. You weren’t really given any other choice at my sixth form. There was no information on other alternatives to university and everyone was pushed into going through UCAS from Day 1.”
Going to university can mean that there are many opportunities for students to thrive, as well as studying a course they are passionate about. But it seems that for some students aren’t really going for the main reason: interest in studying for a degree.
Will the rise in tuition fees make some of these students reconsider more carefully whether or not they want to blindly follow the route of university? Hopefully it will. Since the rise in tuition fees, the number of applications via UCAS (2011-2012 cycle) has decreased, as more and more students are beginning to consider other alternatives, such as Apprenticeships.