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    He doesn't have to mention it, but if he does, it'll fill in the gap in terms of what he did that year. Also, it could strengthen his application if he says something like he stuck it out for a year but then decided that another course would be better for him, although he's certain that University is still where he wants to be. If I was him, I'd put it in.

    That's a tough one really! Personally, i would say that i had previously attended university, but had personal issues to deal with, so could not commit myself fully to the study involved. I would also say that after an intense period of travelling, i had matured, got the travel bug out my system, felt ready to settle and 100% ready to fully apply myself to the course. (lay it on thick, admit to downfalls, but also what lessons have been learned. Just make it really positive!)

    Maybe stretch things a little and say done some vol work abroad which links to the course he's interested in?

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