Thursday, 15 January 2009

When Only Mum Will Do ........

....... to chivvy, nag and generally get things done!

LeeLee is eighteen years old and wants to go to university in October 2009.

However, having always yearned to go to Uni in London, she has been having serious doubts about whether the student lifestyle there is going to be too big a culture shock after settling into life here in France.

She is even questioning going back to the UK at all. She rather likes the sound of Montpellier!

Following sensible advice, LeeLee is however keeping both options open and hoping to apply to both - which is where things get interesting and complex.

Applications for Cambridge University (one of her UK choices) closes October 2008.
Applications to other UK universities closes 15 January 2009.
Applications for French universities START 20 January 2009!

For UK applications it is necesary to have a reference from your college.
In France, however, these do not exist. A dossier, that has been added to throughout your schooling, is sent to the universities - the lycées do not understand or provide references.

So we started early. Last April (2008) we asked LeeLee's lycée for a reference. We printed off, and translated, all the informatiuon we could find about references for them.

The reference was finally given to us November 2008. Too late for LeeLee to apply to Cambridge. A bummer, but that's life and we moved on.

For applications through UCAS, the student has to provide a personal statement. LeeLee has been working on hers since last April.

And by Christmas it was still VERY ropey to say the least. It is all well and good searching and reading examples provided by UCAS on the Internet, but there are only so many times you should put 'fascinated by', 'thrilled by' and 'yearning to learn more' when discussing why you want to do Mathematics at university!!!

I have been in the UK for a few weeks, and before I left I reminded LeeLee AGAIN that the deadline was imminent.
That she still had to finalise her personal statement.
That the reference still had to be translated.

I flew back on the 11 January, to find that things had not moved on much at all. She had indeed given her personal statement to Richard to read, and he said it was appalling..... there I ended up, sitting at the computer with LeeLee until midnight of the final day, getting her application in.

And we made it. Just.

God help her if she does not get any offers!!!!

And God help the UK universities if they accept her.

Are Dads' bonnets the things to wear there?!?! Do students need to be awake for lectures?!

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