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    So here's the long story short of it. During my high school years I was never into school and was always myself into 'trouble' (suspensions, drinking at school, fighting etc...). Now I'm 21 and have been trying to get into a good university for the past 3 years with no luck and it has left me clinically depressed. I kept resitting for the university examination and improving but not to point of getting into the degree I wanted. So now I sent an email to the dean at the University of Cape Town requesting some sought of guidance as to the way forward, here is the letter i sent:

    Dear Professor Anton le Roex

    I am submitting a letter requesting guidance on how to gain admission into the BSc (Computer Science) degree after a rejection due to not meeting the minimum admission requirements set out by the Science faculty.

    I am a former grade 12 student, also having previously resat for the university entrance examinations. Currently this is my second retake of the examinations, having academically improved in each successive year, but not enough for the admission requirements. I was advised by government officials at the department of education in contacting the relevant university (UCT) and looking into other alternative ways into the computer science undergraduate degree.

    I have always been interested in how computers function and the science behind them and pursuing this interest in a university that ranks top in the world rankings has motivated me in pursuing my career. As I told the officials that I could not apply to the other universities & technikons since I wanted to focus my studies on theoretical computer sciences at the University of Cape Town.

    In my two years of resitting for the examinations, I have taken a different stance look at my academics. Initially I spent most of my weeks and weekends at the library to prepare by myself for the examinations. At first I did not use the resources I had available to me , as a result I missed my target of securing the minimum admission requirements, for this reason I decided to obtain the help of my teachers and other students in the second year, to better assist me in my studies. This year I have gained a university exemption but still not the needed UCT requirements. Initially I decided to retake the examinations once more but I was advised against it by the officials. Since I had felt that my poor SBA marks which counted 25% of the year mark and had never redone was a contributing factor. Subsequently, I enquired on whether I could redo the coursework (SBA) or wait until the marks expire. However, the official advised me that I would be wasting my time and that there was also a possibility that I could perform poorly.

    Upon doing further research on your admission policy and realising that aside from receiving a university exemption, I would still need to achieve the minimum admission requirements set by the science faculty. However, I read on the placement section in the prospectus about the ‘Extended Degree Programme (EDP)’ and hence was conjecturing at the possibility of gaining admission into the faculty through this route. As this is the only solution I have stumbled on.

    Due to my performance at school in the last year, my teachers had predicted the possibility that I could receive A’s in those subjects I had redone, since I was one of the top achievers in my class but unfortunately that did not become the case. At the same time I retook the examinations I decided to also start studying for the Computer Science undergraduate degree by using external resources at the vula.uct.ac.za and centerofmath.org websites which offered notes and videos on MAM1000W. I also enrolled in the edX online course programme formed by Harvard University and MIT to help me get better prepared in Computer Science, since they offer a similar syllabus parallel to the one in the science faculty as seen from the faculty handbook.

    I understand that I might not be the only student in a similar position & without academic merit, and also that there are other well deserving students. I am willing to do anything to start over and perform to the best of my abilities in my academics irrespective of the route taken. I would really hope to finish my BSc degree in record time. I hope my letter will be considered on all aspects.

    Yours sincerely"

    This is the reply :

    "Dear Mr

    Your appeal below refers. Unfortunately, I am not able to assist you with gaining admission to UCT to pursue your interests in Computer Science. Our admission criteria are highly competitive and we receive many more applicants with results that meet our admission requirements than we can accommodate. There are thus many who are being turned away despite meeting our admission requirements. Your NSC results are some way off our minimum requirements, both in total points score (you obtained 326 – our minimum is 420), and in subject scores where you obtained 56% for Mathematics and 52% for Physical Science, where the minima are 70% and 60%, respectively.

    If you feel that you wish to pursue your interests in Computer Science, then I would suggest that to apply either to another university or FET College where Computer Science is offered.

    I am sorry that I cannot respond more positively to your appeal, but wish you every success in obtaining admission to another tertiary institution of your choice.

    Yours sincerely
    Anton le Roe"

    I'm currently in South Africa (so the system might be different), I know this is a UK forum but i would very appreciate any form of help.

    Also, a family member i have never met before offered to get me into a different university where she works and offered to pay for everything but because of some kind of family feud I'm not aware of, I haven't heard from her since.

    Should I just give up and work at Mc Donalds?
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