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    I am currently sitting in the Sussex University Library with some free time on my hands, so I thought what better than to share my previous University application experience with those who are a bit worried or downcast because of failing to obtain the required grades for their preferred course or university.

    During my time at college I obtained a very mediocre B and C at A Level, and a Pass in a BETEC (quite frankly a complete waste of time). My first impression was that this would get me into 'a' university considering that the UK has over one hundred higher education institutions. This proved to be my first mistake. Without any aspiration and belief in getting into a good university, I naturally applied to lower ranked institutions, resulting in offers from Newport, Bedfordshire, Sunderland and Marjon. Without doing much research, my second mistake came when I enrolled at Newport University to study Sport Studies, and in the beginning I had high hopes for my time there. However it wasn't until I had visited my girlfriend at Imperial College, London that I realised how much I was missing out on. To be quite blunt, the academic environment of Newport was inferior to that of many secondary schools. That being the case, I was essentially being exploited by having to pay 3,000 pounds to study there. This is my first pointer to you all; don't be satisfied with getting a place at a low ranked university. It simply isn't worth what is now 9,000 pounds. You will be surprised what an original, tactful, and well thought out application can achieve.

    I would also like to make it clear that not achieving the required grades does not necessarily make you intellectually inferior to other high achieving students out there. It just means that they have either worked harder, had a better strategy or were just fortunate enough to have done both (of course being bright individuals themselves). Never feel inadequate. Although University is not a competition, you will be pleasantly surprised by how much smarter you are than many students who attend top universities.

    I can honestly say that aspiring for more and refusing to be told otherwise by a few measly grades has enhanced my happiness and my future prospects. You all have it in you to do the same.

    I hope this has helped those reading.

    All the best,

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