Pros and Cons of University

Graduation was full of mixed feelings really, finishing university was a huge relief for me because it signified the end of 3 years of really hard work and 3 years of fighting with myself to not drop out before the final hurdle. I don't think young people get enough information about university before applying because they think it's the natural 'next step' so I've put together a list of pros and cons so you might be able to answer the question 'Should I go to university?' a little bit more easily.


Pros of going to university

- You should hopefully widen your knowledge of a subject you love and come out with a degree
- You meet some lovely people
- You get student discount in lots of shops
- Even if you can't afford to go the government will help with fees
- Some professions require degree level education (but it's still well worth looking at alternative routes if you're still unsure about university)
- It gives you a taste of independent 'adult' living
- There's opportunity to have a fantastic social life
- If you choose to, you can get involved in lots of interesting extra-curricular activities and societies
- There are student loans to help with fees and maintenance

Cons of going to university 

- Your degree definitely does not guarantee you a job
- It can be very cliquey
- It is very hard work and if you are not willing to push yourself it probably isn't for you
- It costs A LOT and you will be left with debt (although Martin Lewis will tell you that tuition fee debt isn't a bad debt)
- You cannot afford (in money or time) to party all the time in the second and third year, it is NOT a three year party unless you want to come out with a rubbish classification (unless you are a superhuman genius who can bash out an A grade essay in 8 hours)
- Be prepared for it to be a massive shock to the system, I honestly thought it was going to be the making of me; moving to Leeds and starting a new chapter of my life, living the big city lifestyle.... When in reality I didn't fit in with my flatmates, it cost an absolute fortune and I ended up back at home permanently after Christmas, and I still had to pay full rent as the terms and conditions stated that unless you personally found a new occupant, you had to pay the rent whether you were there or not.
- Driving to and from Leeds was such a pain, especially when some days I only had an hour or 2 of teaching so make sure that if you don't want to live near your university that you don't go somewhere too far from home!

If you're really unsure about university you need to ask your in-school/college careers advisor to recommend some alternative routes into what you want to do. There are some fantastic degree-level apprenticeships out there, it's just a case of finding the right one for you.

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