Personal Statements, Predicted Grades And Protected Time

Viv: 'Taxi for Business Studies' - and did someone mention the P word?
Vivienne Hall
May 10, 2024

How are we nearly halfway through the year already? And how is it nearly the end of Year 12?

However, it is not quite the end of the year yet, I still need to get exams out of the way first! My first and only AS exam this year is Business Studies, in which I am counting down the days until I can drop it (genuinely cannot wait!) and spend more time focusing on my end of year exams for my main three subjects in June. For our sixth form anyway, these end-of-year exams make up a significant chunk of your predicted grades, which are put onto our UCAS applications, that are then sent to our chosen universities, who use these predicted grades to decide whether they will accept you or not. Therefore, to put it mildly, these exams are quite important. So, I should probably get revising!

But I will say, revising for exams feels so much easier in the summer than in winter. The extended hours of sunshine make me so much more productive, as in winter, as soon as it goes dark, I want to be wrapped up in a blanket, snuggled up and watching a movie. But in summer, when the sun is still shining late into the evening, I actually quite enjoy working in the study, with the chirping of the birds as relaxing background music.

Mag North Has No Further Information To Offer...

As I am getting closer to my final school year, and closer to the due date of my personal statement, I am starting to realise that in order to keep up with all my wide reading and studies, that I need to stop some of the activities and schemes that I believe will no longer benefit me. This is because I slightly overcommitted myself at the beginning of this year, as I thought that extracurricular activities were the thing that universities desired most, as opposed to super-curricular activities. So now, I have lots of extracurricular activities lined up to go, but not enough time to do the wider reading I actually need to do.

This presents quite a challenge for me though, as I really don’t like to drop out of things, or not do something that I said I was going to do. It makes me feel really lazy and uncommitted, even if people reassure me that it is the right thing to do. But I need to get over myself, and realise that I can’t do everything, so I should do the things that will benefit me the most, and put myself and my goals first, instead of continuing to do activities just because I’m too scared to say that I don’t want to, and having that added stress that I just don’t need.

So, now I am starting to free up my time, and dropping some of the extra stuff, I have more time to get on with my reading list….Which feels like it is getting longer each day! It doesn’t help that I have this annoying habit of starting a book, getting about halfway through it, and then starting a new book and never finishing the first one. So, I have made the executive decision to ban myself from starting any new books, before I finish all the previous ones I’ve started. However, this might take me a while. It’s not that I’m a slow reader, but more the fact that whilst I’m reading, I am making notes on the book at the same time, and switching between reading and writing means I always lose my spot in the book, then I have to re-read the same page again to find where I was up to, so finishing a book takes me a while.

Highly-Polished Worktops: That Goes In The Personal Statement (Somehow)

But it’s not just extra work I want to fill my time with, I actually want something called….A life. Time to spend time with my family and friends, and be able to enjoy that time, instead of stressing about all of the work that I need to do. I also want time just for myself. Protected time where I can just sit and be, whether it is watching a movie or reading a book that isn’t about the macroeconomic economy, or the theories of a guy that died hundreds of years ago.

Whilst I understand that exams and personal statements are important, and I am very grateful that I have the option and opportunity to go to university, I am not a machine, and I don’t want to spend all the time doing activities that I don’t like just so I can write it down on a piece of paper, that someone I don’t know will glance at for about 30 seconds. I want to enjoy my last year's of school, so if that means not having a UCAS application of gold, so be it.