THE BLOG

Clearing - My Experience

15/08/2013 09:02 BST | Updated 14/10/2013 10:12 BST

It was this time three years ago that I found myself like you, anxiously waiting for "that day" to arrive so I could get my A-level results and head off to Exeter University. However, when results day came I missed my grades and didn't get a place.

Back then I had been of the mindset that I was going to go Exeter University or I wasn't going to go to university at all. Seeing my results meant this had to change - I thought maybe I would re-take some of my exams? Or have a year out, go travelling and reapply later? But that wasn't what I did. I ended up going to the University of Greenwich to study for an ITMB degree - and I'm so glad I did. That is why I wanted to share my story with anyone else who may find themselves in a similar position this results day.

When I found out I hadn't got in I was gutted. My AS Levels were fantastic so I knew I'd messed up on the final exams. I immediately had to think - what's next, what are my options? While my family were very supportive none of them had been to university so I looked to friends for advice on other possible universities and routes. The more I thought about it the more I knew that I wanted to do the course I had originally applied for, the IT Management for Business BSc degree (ITMB), because it was developed by employers and offered such great link ups with them throughout the three year course - and, I hoped gave me a greater chance of getting a job after university. So I decided to call the ITMB course director at Exeter. I had met him twice at open days and I'd asked for his business card and said I was welcome to give him a call if I wanted to talk about anything - so I did.

He explained that he was actually starting a new post at the University of Greenwich and that he would take my UCAS application with him to talk to the department at Greenwich. Within 24 hours, he called to say he had spoken with the director and that they would like me to join Greenwich in September. I couldn't believe it - it had all happened so fast and here I was having gone from no university place to an offer in the space of a few days.

If you missed your grades on Thursday, remember to be open-minded and stay positive. I had not considered Greenwich University despite the fact that they offered the ITMB course that I wanted to study and I have had the most amazing three years. I haven't looked back, you have to take the opportunities and challenges life throws at you and turn them in to positives. I had a summer internship every summer whilst studying (which certainly helped with the bills!) and I am about to start as a technical consultant for HP (Hewlett-Packard) - a great graduate job for a fantastic company. These achievements are no mean feat in this day and age where many graduates find themselves struggling to find work and neither would have been possible without my degree and the connections I made with employers whilst studying at University.

So, if on Thursday it feels like the whole world is crumbling around you, take some time to work out your next steps; talk to friends, family, school, college and any contacts that you may have made during the application process. Be open to their suggestions and advice and while it might feel like everything's going wrong the changes to your plans could turn out, like my experience, to really mean that everything went right.