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My Uni Experience: Every cloud

So 2020 turned out to be a bit rubbish for most of us. The first couple of months came with the usual New Year promises and aspirations, but it all went downhill real quick. Thousands lost their lives to Covid; friends, family, loved ones hospitalised and isolated, medics playing catch-up with limited and mostly inappropriate resources. We were all told to stay home, and we did, some told to work from home for the foreseeable future. Then there were those who simply had to push on, providers of essential services for the nation. The "lucky" were put on furlough, but many were left to fend for themselves.

At the time of the pandemic I was working at a data centre keeping the cogs moving for an international financial services giant. My employer started off asking me to attend site, then put me on the government's furlough scheme for a couple of months before deciding my services were no longer required. With my request to extend the furlough period declined I, like so many others, was left abandoned and disillusioned.

Having time at home with nothing to do but gain weight and apply for countless jobs whilst watching the BBC's daily 4pm dose of doom and gloom bought me to the decision to invest in myself and apply for a place at university. It wasn't the first time I considered higher education, I had talked myself out of it on several occasions convinced I couldn't afford to live without a full time wage. But now the job market was non-existent and I felt I had nothing to lose, I decided this may be the perfect time to stick two fingers up to the rat race and live out one of my dreams.

I filled out my funding application, selected my university choices via UCAS and was offered an unconditional placement on the BA (Hons) Photography course at University of the Arts London. A very proud moment for me, I was initially told that the course was full at UAL but "bullied" my way in by submitting my portfolio to the course leader directly.

2020 had something to offer me now, the seed was planted and it was time to see what would grow out of this.


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