“Do you ever regret not going to university?”
We were on a girl’s weekend away, in Dorset, crowded around in a circle of 7 on the floor of our caravan playing a question game when my friend, Liv, asked me this when it came to my turn to be asked. “Um,” I paused for a short second before confidently announcing my answer: “Nope.”
I didn’t really go into my detail with my answer there and then but now, a few weeks later, it got me thinking about it a lot. Because although I’ve never felt like I should justify my reasons behind choosing not to attend uni, I feel that some people find it helpful to know that they are not alone if they choose to follow a similar route as mine. And I feel that they should know that life isn’t over just because you didn’t get a degree!
When I was 17 I didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do with my life. I had a few things I enjoyed doing but I hadn’t yet found my calling, and I was falling out of love with education at the same time. But I followed the crowd and decided that I wouldn’t mind studying a photography degree, so I found myself creating a portfolio and travelling to interviews in Wales and Falmouth to gain myself a place in a university that would want me. I was thrilled when I got into all the ones I wanted; excited that I got into universities that set high standards and believed that I could follow that standard well enough.
But despite all that excitement, I still wasn’t sure that it was the right fit for me. So I deferred a year, started a Marketing Apprenticeship instead and never looked back.
For me personally, this turned out to be just the right choice for me. It allowed me to help out with my youngest brother and sister in those early years and watch them develop into the little people they are now. It allowed me to still be around for my teenager brother if he needed me and also see the rest of my family on a regular basis (something that is important to me).
I was given the chance to get thrown into the working world early and figure out exactly what I did and didn’t like for a job, and I worked with a variety of different characters from all walks of life. This helped me to settle into my next job quicker, because I already knew what to expect.
It also gave me the chance to actually follow my gut! I’m glad that I didn’t waste money on a degree that wasn’t really going to benefit me in the long run and the fact that I don’t regret this makes me believe more strongly in my future choices, because now I trust myself to know what’s right for me.
I don’t think it would’ve been a bad choice for me if I decided to go to university but I’m a big believer in fate and I’m a big believer in following my gut feelings. I don’t regret anything and if my decision back then has worked out well for me now, then who am I to argue with that?
Sure, I can see myself getting a degree one day and I look forward to doing that. But for now, my life is going just fine 🙂
(The featured photo? That’s myself and Charlotte: a fellow uni-skipper, early work-grinder and instagram obsessed marketeer. You might be able to tell how much we get along!)