Sunday, 21 June 2015

The Truth Behind Repeating The Leaving Cert

Look I get it, the leaving is done and won't be discussed about again until August when you get that piece of paper that will shape the rest of your life but there are people out there right now freaking out about how terrible maths was, and how Desdemona came up in English paper 2 and that's the exact reason why I've decided to write this post today and not at the end of August.
 Most of my readers will know that this year I repeated my leaving cert after I didn't get my dream course of journalism and new media in the University Of Limerick. When I opened the envelope which held my results back in August I couldn't stop crying, what was I going to do now?? I didn't want anywhere other than UL, since I was sixteen journalism was all I've ever wanted what do I do now?!! Basically I had three choices:
1. Take the year off and look for a job knowing full well that I would never get my dream course in UL.
2. Spend the next nine months back up in the school I had waited so long to get out of and repeat the leaving.
3. Or to go and study marketing.
I eventually decided I had no other option but to repeat and I couldn't have been more depressed. I only lasted a couple of weeks in school until I dropped out. I couldn't handle any more school, I mean I was nineteen years old and I was required to get my journal signed by a parent... like, come on!!! But that being said I knew I couldn't give up on my dreams so I decided to repeat from home and let me tell you right now it was tough!! I'd be heading up to bed on a Thursday night when I'd suddenly get a snap of the girls heading out on the town exploring their new city, it killed me but I knew it would be worth it in the end.. I hoped (...well, I still do hope)

When people ask about repeating the leaving cert I'm
usually bombarded with the 'I could never repeat' 'I couldn't do that to myself' and of course the 'F*ck that' but truth be told, it's been the most beneficial year of my entire life.
Obviously repeating isn't ideal, at nineteen I couldn't wait for college.I couldn't wait to leave my small town and the drama behind it and move away and not to mention another year of LC stress it was a nightmare but the year out was the best thing I could have ever done.

Study wise, repeating from home isn't the best idea.I won't lie to you and say I had the motivation to open a book every single day but I'd recommend if anyone wants to repeat entirely for the points then do it in school. It's much easier when you're in a class and getting regular homework and class tests but if, you're like me and the thought of having to get your parent to sign your homework at nineteen not only depresses you but angers you then I'd say repeat from home. 
I intentionally began the process of repeating the leaving for the points, I wanted UL, I wanted journalism, I could never settle for anything less and between me and you.. I don't know what I want to do right now. College is the only option for me personally this year but what I will result in studying will not only be a mystery to you, but also to me.
When I first realised that maybe journalism wasn't for me I freaked out. The thought of not having a plan and not seeing the whole picture terrified me, and it also upset me deeply. I had spent the year studying and being back in school and for what? - Well, right now I'm still unsure but I can live without a full image and whatever happens, happens.

In terms of the experience and the opportunities I've gained this year I can't begin to tell you how much it's benefited me, not only for the next year or so but for the rest of my life. On top of my studying I've written for some of the countries biggest websites 'TheLiberal.ie' 'Campus.ie' 'TheSecretObsession.com, JustJenBlog.com, as well as getting an article published in the Limerick Leader and being on a live debate on Limerick Live 95fm. My blog blew up and I got to interview some incredible people who I adore like Mike Sherry, Maclean Burke, Lisa Fitzpatrick, Courtney Smith, Aoibhe Devlin... but to name a few.
On top of that I also have a level 6 cert in broadcast journalism and presenting and if I was in college there's no chance I would have gotten any of these experiences and that is why this year has been so beneficial for my future career, whatever that will be.

The truth behind repeating the leaving cert is very simple, you'll get out of it what you put into it. If you work hard and push yourself to do your study you'll get your results but for me I knew I wanted to have something achieved by the end of summer and I do, even if it's just something small.
 I wrote this post because I don't want those students out there who are already thinking they might have to repeat feeling bad or feeling hopeless because trust me it isn't so bad, of course some people will look down on you because you're repeating but feck them!! many others will think a lot more of you, trust me it's not something that everyone can do.
Just remember, you'll get out of it what you put into it.

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