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University-- Go in September or take a year off?


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I REALLY need advice.


I just graduated highschool in June and I *thought* that I had a solid plan to go to University the following September. But I made mistakes on an application to one school and didn't find out til later, killing my chances of getting into there, but that was okay, because that was only my back up school anyways. I applied to two others. One of them sent me an offer of admission and an offer to an entrance scholarship of $2500. The other one has not accepted me and I am pretty sure it won't at all. My average grades aren't quite high enough to get in.


The one that DID accept me though, informed me that I had missed the deadline to apply for guaranteed on-campus housing. I applied late anyways and am now on a fairly large waiting list... my hopes are quite low. To add to this, I also apparently missed my registration date to register for my courses and now have to register late. Almost EVERYTHING is full. Courses that are mandatory for my program are full. Courses that I would consider as a back-up plan are full. I have the option of going on more waiting lists... but at this point I feel helpless.


I've made so many mistakes so far and will continue to make them because this whole process is confusing the hell out of me. I have had no help with figuring this out whatsoever, my parents won't help (even though they are the ones that are pressuring me to go to that certain university) and my high school counselors never told me any useful information. I have had to do everything on my own and its gotten me almost nowhere. I am going to try and call a university counselor tomorrow and ask some questions, but I have a feeling I'm almost too late.


Now that I've seen the process, and know what to expect and how to look for deadlines, I want to start it all over again. A couple of my friends are taking a year off to just work and save money and escape the stress of school before going back. At this point, it would be a relief to start everything fresh next year, reapply to all the schools, meet deadlines and not screw up everything. Is this a good idea though? I would need to find a place to live for a year, and my parents would be pissed, but its my life and they have been of no help to me in this.


This is my first time ever considering this, I was so sure for years that I would go straight on to uni after 12th grade. I am very undecided.

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If you take a year off it sounds like you would be doing so because you feel frustrated and overwhelmed, not because you actually want to take a year off. You have less help than you expected maybe, but I guarantee you that many, if not most, students feel this way trying to sort everything out that first year. If it's not housing, waiting lists, etc. then it's funding, program requirements, and other things causing complications. I spent my last 2 years of high school jumping through hoops because I wanted to go to a Canadian school and it was so confusing trying to even find out what their equivalent requirements were, never mind MEET the requirements! Thinking about it almost gets me feeling frustrated and lost all over again. So just know that it is totally normal to feel the way you are feeling.


It all seems like a cluster-eff now, but it could also be messy in other ways one year from now. I would suggest that you stick with your original plan of going to school in September (only because it seems like that's what you would do sans obstacles) and work through the things that are overwhelming you. It is more manageable than you think. Make a list of the things that are not going your way, then make an action plan of how each issue needs to be dealt with. You can work through it all!!! I think it will be worth it.

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It's true, part of the reason is frustration but I also do feel as if I need to stop and relax, I'm now doubting whether or not I am ready to be going back to school so soon. The other reason is because I waited too long to accept my admission offer and now almost every course is overfilled, and it seems so unlikely that I would manage to get into the ones I register for. I also probably won't get into housing... and this university is 4 hours from home. There are so many problems I've created for myself, and I really do wish they could be solved.


There is also a deadline to "defer" my admission by 1 year. This deadline is in two days. So I need to make a decision fast, or bye bye scholarship =( And if I wait and keep trying but then I don't get into the courses I need or into housing, that's it.


Thanks for your input though, I'll be trying to figure this stuff out all day tomorrow ](*,)

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The other reason is because I waited too long to accept my admission offer and now almost every course is overfilled, and it seems so unlikely that I would manage to get into the ones I register for


I don't perceive this as being a big problem at all. It's July! I've gotten into almost every class I put on my watchlist with less time to make it in. People drop classes and switch schedules all the time. Any class that I couldn't get into, I called an administrator and had myself enrolled over the limit (they will do this for you--at my school at least--as long as the room is not over the max room occupancy allowed for fire codes). I'm not trying to be pushy But I do want you to understand that this may not be as big of a problem as you think. It sucks not to have it all in order now, but that doesn't mean you're screwed


I also probably won't get into housing... and this university is 4 hours from home.


Have you looked into other options for housing? You don't have to live in residence. In fact I'd much prefer making different arrangements and living elsewhere! Check facebook marketplace, check kijiji, check other housing listings and I guarantee you you will find a student, who doesn't live in residence, looking for a roommate. And depending on your budget, you may even consider living in an apartment on your own. There's bound to be a place to live. Again, not trying to be pushy, just trying to show you that all hope is not lost.


As for the deadline to delay admission--that IS a bummer that you only have a little while to decide. You should try calling the school though and speaking with someone in the scholarship/financial aid office. When you speak to a real person, you will find that they often make exceptions or at least give you useful information that you didn't know before.


It's true, part of the reason is frustration but I also do feel as if I need to stop and relax, I'm now doubting whether or not I am ready to be going back to school so soon


Now that is a reason I can certainly understand. I hesitated because of that too, but in the end I was compelled to go because my first year was completely paid for in scholarships and I didn't want to lose that. And I'm really glad I ended up going to uni straight from high school because a year is a LONG time to feel aimless and useless and that's what I would have been! You could also flourish and grow in that one year off though. It can go either way, and I have seen it go both ways with friends that decided to take a year off. I wish you lots of luck deciding though!! I don't think you can make a wrong choice either way: there are of course pros and cons to each decision, but in the end, they are just different paths to the same end and you can't screw up.

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Here is a question...if you deferred for a year what would you do? Where would you work to earn money? Would you feel like you wasted a year? It is not too late to bounce back from all of the mistakes you made even though it seems a bit overwhelming now. Take this as a lesson learned that you need to be really on top of things. If you are confused about process then the appropriate person at the University is who you should contact rather than high school counsellors or your parents. Call the university and see how difficult it would be to get into the courses you want. Are the full courses actually courses you need (prerequisites for courses you need the following semester?).

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What would you do for that year?


Most people who take a year off typically "never get around to going back to college" or they are bored out of their minds and stuck at home while their friends are off doing new things and meeting new people.


If you're going to take a year off, have a solid plan of what you'll be doing for that year.

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By the way, classes are never filled until after the first week. Everyone is messing with their schedule, dropping classes, switching ones that a lot of seats are up for grabs.


Talk to the professor on the first day, before class (before anyone else can get to them first) and tell them how excited you were to be taking this class and how badly you want to be a *classname-ist*

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Do not take a year off, you've been given some advice on how to overcome the problems you've created. Follow it.


There is housing available besides residence halls. And really it's just like having a shared bedroom that most kids can't wait to get out of. Check craigslist for apartments/roommates, etc. Call the campus housing dept and see what they can recommend for you.


As for classes, people do drop them so put yourself on the waitlist. Contact the professor and see if you can get in or what they're policy is. Some allow you to come to the first day of class and take a spot when another student drops. Be seen and be heard when it comes to professors. And try taking some classes in your major or sign up for general ed classes. You have to take them all eventually. There's bound to be a class for you take. Maybe not your ideal class but go back and try again.

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i am in school myself right now and i know how many people register for way more classes and drop at the end. so it is actually easy to get into class even though you are in waitlist now. people drop add even when the classes have started. sometimes they sit in one class to see if they like the professor, course curriculum and then drop becaoz they didn't like something. and all this happen in the first week of classes (atleast in my school). so i would say you have still chances of getting into courses of your choice.

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I chose to take a year off after I graduated in June of '08..to focus on working full time and my social life.


One year turned into two..


now two years will turn into three because i'm about to have a baby.


I'm planning on starting school next August now but who knows how things will turn out since i'll be juggling a full time job and a one year old. Please, I really would avoid taking a year off. It's going to be so much harder to get back into that 'school' frame of mind when you do go back..honestly, it would be so much easier to just go...you'll be thankful for it in the end! I really wish I would've just gone.

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Thanks everyone for your advice, but after talking to my sister, my boyfriend, my parents and my best friend, I decided to defer my offer of admission. I just faxed the university my request form. Now I just have to wait to see if it's been accepted.


After talking to people I feel that my main reasons for doing this now are a) I am somewhat short on funds for the cost of my first year and have missed the deadline to take a student loan b) I don't feel ready for this and c) I feel like I will be more prepared and have a clearer mind going into uni the following september, and knowing what to expect with deadlines.


So since there is no option for me to put off school for any longer then a year without losing my scholarship and position at the university, I feel as if I wouldn't be tempted to take off more time or get lazy about going back. I have a set goal as to what I want to pursue as a career and how I am going to get there. I want everything to go right, which is why I'm doing this.

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ok..so you have decided not to go for fall semester..but you can start taking classes in spring semester?..you dont have to start the year in september and im sure a couple months will give you time to clear stuff out. And to be honest..you will never feel prepared for college..Even when i went to my freshmen year living in the dorms and i made every deadline and never felt prepared. College is a place you wont be prepared, but you will learn things as you go. I was at the point of failing a class and i ended up getting a B because i went to talk to my professor and got helped at a resource center at the University (and i had straight A's in highschool)


Also is there a community college you can go to? I feel that if you take a whole year off from school...will hurt you in the long run. Most of my friends went straight to work after highschool and arent really thinking of going back to school because they have bigger bills to pay..(apartments, food, cell phones) so they dont have time to go back to school because of their bills..so they have to still be a full time employee.

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So since there is no option for me to put off school for any longer then a year without losing my scholarship and position at the university, I feel as if I wouldn't be tempted to take off more time or get lazy about going back.


That's good news. That would be the main risk (not ever going back) but it looks like you will have incentive to go next year. Good luck with everything!

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