A-level results day was one of the scariest days of my life. I woke up so early to get to school and find out what I’d got. However, when I opened my results envelope I didn’t find the letters I’d been hoping of. Not the letters I needed to get into medical school. Not the letters I needed for any of my university options. This was heartbreaking and the world seemed to crumble beneath me.
Fortunately, I had a really supportive network of staff who knew exactly what to do next, and if this happens to you then the main thing is to not worry and stay calm. Before this moment I hadn’t even heard of ‘clearing’ but it is a really good thing. Basically, all the leftover university spaces are made available for people who didn’t manage to get any of their options, or even people who’ve just had a change of heart.
You need to log onto UCAS and find the universities that are doing the course you want, make a list of them all and the grades/points they require, then go down the list crossing off ones which are not right for you and then start to ring the ones that are. For me, I had two main options from this list (one being Lincoln), I rang them both and decided whoever gave me an offer first I would accept – that’s how I came to be here.
As an aspiring medical student, not getting the required grades can seem like the end of the world but there is another way – Biomedical Science, then progress onto graduate-entry medicine. I would describe Biomedical Science as being the ‘behind the scenes of being a doctor’ and it is useful for gaining the scientific knowledge and skills crucial in any medical career. It has also greatly improved my confidence and I now feel truly ready for a career in medicine – if anything it has made me sure this is the job I want for the rest of my life. A similar approach can be taken for aspiring veterinary students too, you will just need to do something like Bio-veterinary science instead of biomedical. Additionally, you do not necessarily need to do a scientific degree to get into post-graduate medicine, a lot of universities accept other degrees too but you may need additional experience or additions to your application. Take a look at some university websites now to see all your options.
A similar approach can be taken for aspiring veterinary students too, you will just need to do something like Bio-veterinary science instead of biomedical. Additionally, you do not necessarily need to do a scientific degree to get into post-graduate medicine, a lot of universities accept other degrees too but you may need additional experience to boost your application.
If you are in a similar position to me then I know you’ll feel disheartened at first, but it will all be okay in the end. There are always multiple paths to get where you want to go, and clearing is one of them. Take the time to look at some university websites to see all your options, and like me, you might find a new way to get where you need to be.