Drop out of uni with a year left? Watch

Frigateer
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I am really stuck and I feel like I've messed up badly. So the situation is I've finished 3 years of my 4-year degree (joint philosophy and French with an Erasmus year in 3rd year). For the first two years I basically just slogged my way through, not really connecting with the course, just doing the bare minimum to get a 2:1. I never really had any ambitions, I just went to uni because it was the 'obvious next step' on from secondary school, and it's basically the only option that our career guidance teacher would acknowledge. I'm not sure what I expected the course to be like, but I don't think it was this.

Then last September I went to France on Erasmus and everything went to ****. The professors/admin staff were completely unhelpful and seemed to look down on Erasmus students, or at least not understand the struggles they encounter. The accomodation was terrible (the cooking facilities ammounted to a microwave and two-ring hob shared among 20 people; the staff would come into bedrooms whenever they felt like it, sometimes with zero forewarning). I wasn't able to talk to anyone, thanks to a combination of social anxiety and my spoken French being terrible. There were a lot more problems but I won't go into everthing.

My mental health started to go bad around this time. At Halloween (so, a quarter of the way through the year) I flew back home and begged to be able to quit Erasmus and do makeup work for the year (a year's Erasmus stay is a requirement of my course to be able to do final year). My coordinator basically just told me to go back and continue until Christmas and then see how I felt. Everything got worse, the real camel's-back-breaking straw being a presentation we had to give in pairs in the language class for Eramus students. My partner refused to work together, so I was left to do my half on my own, and give it on my own, in a foreign language, to a class full of people I barely knew. I ended up having a panic attack and started crying in front of everybody. When I got out of the class I skipped all my classes for the next few weeks. I just stayed in my room sleeping 14 hours a day and drinking and watching Netflix and I really only went outside to buy food and vodka or if I knew we had an exam. I skipped two of my assignments which meant I couldn't pass either of my philosophy classes.

I came home at Christmas and managed to get the year written off as a deferred year, but with the Eramus counting enough so that I can go into final year. But now I don't want to. Since January I've just been spending my time the same as I was in France. I haven't gotten any help for my mental health. I have to start final year in 4 weeks time and I'm dreading it. I feel like I won't be able to get back into the swing of things and that I'll just end up failing all my assignments, and wasting the year and a lot of money if I go back. My degree isn't going to lead anywhere useful. I don't have any friends or anything tying me to my university town. But I don't know what else to do.

Ideally I would like to do an apprenticeship and become an electrician. Even if I completed my degree I would still end up doing this probably. I know it's a jump from my degree but it's something I'd be interested in and that at least it's something useful I could be good at. But if I do apply for this it would be another year before I could start (because I, in my eternal intelligence, didn't look at it this year even though I already knew it's what I wanted to do). And if I ended up dropping out I would be stuck sitting at home again (no car, tiny village with zero jobs going where the buses run once a week, no money to move out of my parents' house). But the thought of going back to uni terrifies me.

I'm not even sure why I'm writing this, I know what the advice is going to be, and as much as I hate it I probably will end up going back to uni and graduating with a 2:2 most likely. I just really need to get this all out of my head because I don't really have anyone to speak to about this.
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(Original post by Frigateer)
I am really stuck and I feel like I've messed up badly. So the situation is I've finished 3 years of my 4-year degree (joint philosophy and French with an Erasmus year in 3rd year). For the first two years I basically just slogged my way through, not really connecting with the course, just doing the bare minimum to get a 2:1. I never really had any ambitions, I just went to uni because it was the 'obvious next step' on from secondary school, and it's basically the only option that our career guidance teacher would acknowledge. I'm not sure what I expected the course to be like, but I don't think it was this.

Then last September I went to France on Erasmus and everything went to ****. The professors/admin staff were completely unhelpful and seemed to look down on Erasmus students, or at least not understand the struggles they encounter. The accomodation was terrible (the cooking facilities ammounted to a microwave and two-ring hob shared among 20 people; the staff would come into bedrooms whenever they felt like it, sometimes with zero forewarning). I wasn't able to talk to anyone, thanks to a combination of social anxiety and my spoken French being terrible. There were a lot more problems but I won't go into everthing.

My mental health started to go bad around this time. At Halloween (so, a quarter of the way through the year) I flew back home and begged to be able to quit Erasmus and do makeup work for the year (a year's Erasmus stay is a requirement of my course to be able to do final year). My coordinator basically just told me to go back and continue until Christmas and then see how I felt. Everything got worse, the real camel's-back-breaking straw being a presentation we had to give in pairs in the language class for Eramus students. My partner refused to work together, so I was left to do my half on my own, and give it on my own, in a foreign language, to a class full of people I barely knew. I ended up having a panic attack and started crying in front of everybody. When I got out of the class I skipped all my classes for the next few weeks. I just stayed in my room sleeping 14 hours a day and drinking and watching Netflix and I really only went outside to buy food and vodka or if I knew we had an exam. I skipped two of my assignments which meant I couldn't pass either of my philosophy classes.

I came home at Christmas and managed to get the year written off as a deferred year, but with the Eramus counting enough so that I can go into final year. But now I don't want to. Since January I've just been spending my time the same as I was in France. I haven't gotten any help for my mental health. I have to start final year in 4 weeks time and I'm dreading it. I feel like I won't be able to get back into the swing of things and that I'll just end up failing all my assignments, and wasting the year and a lot of money if I go back. My degree isn't going to lead anywhere useful. I don't have any friends or anything tying me to my university town. But I don't know what else to do.

Ideally I would like to do an apprenticeship and become an electrician. Even if I completed my degree I would still end up doing this probably. I know it's a jump from my degree but it's something I'd be interested in and that at least it's something useful I could be good at. But if I do apply for this it would be another year before I could start (because I, in my eternal intelligence, didn't look at it this year even though I already knew it's what I wanted to do). And if I ended up dropping out I would be stuck sitting at home again (no car, tiny village with zero jobs going where the buses run once a week, no money to move out of my parents' house). But the thought of going back to uni terrifies me.

I'm not even sure why I'm writing this, I know what the advice is going to be, and as much as I hate it I probably will end up going back to uni and graduating with a 2:2 most likely. I just really need to get this all out of my head because I don't really have anyone to speak to about this.
Firstly the pressure is clearly not helping your mental health. Talk to your university to arrange to intermit/suspend your studies for a year.

Use the year to get some help with your mental health and health and alcohol problems and at the same time explore the apprenticeship/electrician options.

You need to give yourself the time, treatment and information to make a good decision about what to do next. Taking that decision right now isn’t going to be a good decision...and just sticking things out piling more unhappy experiences on top of you is going to make things worse.
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