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Coping with Setbacks

We have all experienced obstacles in our lives; some of us less, others more. Either way, one thing is for certain: we are all bound to experience setbacks.

I experienced my first major setback in January when the university I had dreamt of studying at since I was 11 rejected me. I felt really hopeful when I applied to study Law at Cambridge University in September 2017, this was hugely contrasted by the disappointment I felt in January 2018 when I learned I would not be going; it was like hitting rock-bottom! I had been pooled – where students are put into a group and chosen by other Colleges. Not a total failure right? But at that time it was the hardest thing to accept, to let the dream go.

Unfortunately, things got worse when my second choice university, the London School of Economics and Political Sciences, also rejected me. I had worked so hard to achieve the appropriate grades, and it was still not enough; I felt worthless.

However, I picked myself up and started to look at the positives and the successes I’ve enjoyed over the years- this setback would not define me. Shortly after, I received offers from the University of Warwick and University of Durham, two of the best law schools in the country. I’ve chosen Warwick as my firm choice but will also put myself through the ‘adjustment programme’ to see if I can secure a place at LSE or UCL. This way I can hope to stay in London with my AEC family!

The most important thing I’ve learned from these obstacles and setbacks is to use them as opportunities to grow. I learned that it is not the end of the world if Cambridge rejects me because I can still study at Warwick or in London- my education is what I make it, not the university on the certificate at the end!

The same applies to the way we prepare for our exams during this crucial time. It’s ok to sit a practice paper and make mistakes. It’s what we learn from it and how we adapt that’s important.

Good luck to everyone sitting exams at the moment and remember:

‘Success is not defined by the outcome, but by the journey it takes to get there.’

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