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How would you feel about two DC at the same uni?

(33 Posts)
EmmaWoodlouse Wed 19-Aug-15 22:12:41

DS1 is off to uni soon as some of you know.

DS2 will be applying this autumn and has recently started looking at courses he might be interested in so he can get an idea of the sort of grades he'll need. The early front-runner is the same uni DS1 is going to (though not the same course).

He'll probably change his mind 20 times before he has to make a proper decision, and even then he might not actually get the grades he needs. But my first instinct is that it might not be a good thing to have siblings at the same uni. To me a big part of the point of going is to get away from the family and gain some independence, and I could see them sticking together and not really socialising as much with other people, either as a comfort sort of thing or because they just felt a sense of obligation to each other. DS1 is not a very sociable person anyway, and if he does manage to make some sort of a social life for himself in his first year, it would be sad if he then neglected it in favour of his brother.

On the plus side, the location is fairly close to us and it would make getting them and their belongings to and from uni a bit easier - and if one of them eventually gets a car they could lift-share. But that doesn't seem like the most important consideration.

Anyone been in this position? Do you think it helped or hindered your DC, or didn't make much difference?

ImperialBlether Wed 19-Aug-15 22:19:43

I think it would be better if they went to different universities, particularly if one is likely to be more dependent on the other. They could always get jobs in the same town afterwards if they wanted to, but university is a great opportunity to make new friends and having an older/younger sibling there would be a problem for a lot of people.

maudpringles Wed 19-Aug-15 22:22:55

We have 2 dd's at the same university and as they are doing very different courses they are in separate parts of the campus.
They have had no problems as they have their own friends and interests smile

BackforGood Wed 19-Aug-15 22:26:25

I think this is a bit dependent on your dss' personalities.
I opened the thread to say I didn't think it need be an issue as Universities are big enough that the need never go near each other, but as you say you think they will, then I'd be persuading them away from the idea.

senua Thu 20-Aug-15 10:13:18

To me a big part of the point of going is to get away from the family and gain some independence.

Agreed. If the plan works then DS1 might be a different person twelve months from now so this will be a non-problem!smile

I don't have this experience for DC but some of DS's cohort went to the same place. One he was quite matey with melted away after one semester (different course, different halls) but he is still in contact with another (same city, different University).
Who can say how it will pan out?

minipie Thu 20-Aug-15 10:30:17

I think DS2 should choose whichever is the best uni and course for him regardless of where his brother is. If DS1's uni is clearly the best course or best fit then it would be a shame if DS2 felt he couldn't go there just because DS1 is there. However if it's a toss up between several equal options then yes I agree it might be better for him to choose somewhere else.

Gymbunny1204 Thu 20-Aug-15 10:34:26

I think you should let them do what they want. Following a course they are interested in and will stick too while being together versus potential to not be where they want plus away from a sibling could lead to leaving early.

SecretSquirrels Thu 20-Aug-15 10:43:13

I could have posted this.
DS1 very happily settled at uni and about to go into year 2.
DS2 went to visit and much to his surprise loved the campus so much he went back on an open day. It's now in his top two.
They are very different though and the courses are different. I felt with DS2 that he would probably have a totally different experience than his brother.
If it had been the other way round I would have had reservations due to their personalities. DS2 is much more independent and outgoing then DS1.
DH thinks it's a wonderful idea, because of the transport thing and also the fact that they would be there for each other in an emergency.

AtiaoftheJulii Thu 20-Aug-15 10:43:31

I think it's fine - much handier for drop offs and visits! Even if they were doing the same course they would be living in different places and following different timetables, so would be unlikely to be living in each other's pockets.

StonedGalah Thu 20-Aug-15 11:18:41

Is the point of going to University not to further your education? hmm Now that students have to pay l would think ideas like going to University to gain independence will be long gone and may just be a bonus.

Please don't tell one DS he can't attend a University he wants because your other DS is there. That is just madness!

RandomFriend Thu 20-Aug-15 12:30:23

I think it would be great to have two DCs at one university. I shall be encouraging DS to include DD's university as one of his five UCAS choices.

Universities are so large that they wouldn't have to see eachother, except when they wanted to. The fact that they would be there for eachother in case of emergency would be useful.

OP, your DS1 will have a whole year to establish his circle of friends before his DB arrives. If the course that your DS2 is interested in is great, don't rule it out just because DS1 is there.

Helenluvsrob Thu 20-Aug-15 17:38:19

Strangely I have 2 DC at the same university. Eldest completing a masters ( 1st degree same uni) , DS just finished 1st year. It's been fine.

It came about because DS ended up with his 5th choice ( which is loving) was more unusual one and apart from London this was, he thought the best course. He really didn't want to go to her uni.

They could go weeks without meeting up - different ends of campus etc. However the both have choral scholarships and sing together 2x. ( if you have two rugby players thry probably wouldn't meet much on campus but say your kids were into a niche spirt like archery they probably would) .

It's been good for them. They get on fine and the subjects are about as far apart as subjects coukd be so no competition etc. DS fits in with her friends fine.

It's been bril for us - one trip up to a concert - see both kids smile and it's a sensible distance away. We can pop up for the day/ evening even and still bugger off home after. Don't fool yourself you'll save on taking them up at the start if term etc - too much stuff and different dates !

Minor benefit - DS chucking stuff in her spare room at xmas and coming home by train ( they have to empty hall rooms every holiday - watch this one, it's an utter pain, I'd rather pay rent over the holiday ,)

Helenluvsrob Thu 20-Aug-15 17:40:18

It also made me a bit happier that they had each when my mum died in February sad

MyEvenNewerAccount Thu 20-Aug-15 18:20:53

Two of my DCs and two of their cousins are at the same Uni. It's never been an issue. Occasionally they meet up or travel together but they almost never run into each other otherwise.

Most unis have thousands of students.

Blu Thu 20-Aug-15 18:32:45

I went to the same Uni as my brother and we never saw each other. Different courses, different years, different accommodation , our own friends and activities.

PattyPenguin Thu 20-Aug-15 20:13:14

Same experience as Blu. Spent two years at the same relatively small university in the same tiny town as my brother, saw him maybe 6 times, usually when we made an effort to see each other.

Should add to Blu's list "different pubs".

TeenAndTween Fri 21-Aug-15 09:23:02

Same as Blu and Patty.

Decorhate Fri 21-Aug-15 10:51:33

It is very normal where I come from as most people go to their local uni. I overlapped with my sister for one year. She was living at home that year & stayed with maybe once a week. Otherwise we didn't really see each other during the week. Two of my siblings shared a flat at one stage. It was just normal for there.

UphillPhil Fri 21-Aug-15 11:18:30

My brother and I went to the same university. We met up once every week or two for a cup of tea or something & that was it. Which was perfect - a bit of moral support for each other and we each had our own totally separate lives, friend circles etc the rest of the time.

How often do you run into someone you know in the average university town without prior arrangement? Not very often!

FishWithABicycle Fri 21-Aug-15 11:57:05

Universities are generally huge. It depends on the university but more than 10,000 undergraduates is not uncommon. The likelihood of them crossing paths much is minimal. I was at the same Uni as one of my siblings - we occasionally bumped into one another in the supermarket or walking along the street, but usually we wouldn't see much of each other though we tried to meet up for lunch at least once a term and would always pop around to each other's room on our birthdays but that was it.

DepecheNO Fri 21-Aug-15 13:16:26

I don't think it's really an issue as long as they want the same thing out of it r.e. socialising together. Could be problematic if one is really dependent or the other is afraid of hurting his feelings, but for example with me and my brother it would not be an issue as we barely spoke to each other when we lived together and living nearby would purely be a security/crisis thing.

I agree with those who said they probably wouldn't run into each other unplanned unless having a lot of mutual friends and interests. Living in the same town / attending the same uni is vastly different to being in the same year group, department and house share. Any one of the aforementioned three factors would be unlikely to cause major problems as long as the others were different.

For reference, I'm a current student living in a relatively small uni city with multiple unis/colleges and the only people I ever run into are on campus or going to and from my apartment block. Me and my brother have been at separate schools since I was eleven, are four years apart and have no mutual friends or interests, but will be at uni at more or less the same time. I'd sooner have him house share with me than most people, and he feels the same way. So just saying, I don't think going to the same uni will necessarily be bad, and it might help the more dependent sibling as long as both are 100% happy with the arrangement. Doesn't seem fair to turn down or defer the perfect course to avoid a sibling you get on with!

SaskiaRembrandtWasFramed Fri 21-Aug-15 13:20:16

I have two DS at the same university. They do meet up regularly, but still have separate friends and interests, live in different places.

Molio Fri 21-Aug-15 14:23:12

I've had five at the same uni, about to be six - only the eldest had a year without overlapping. It's never been a problem, they've never lived in each other's pockets but on the other hand it's been nice for them to have each other vaguely around. It's been a massive help on the logistics front - can't stress that enough smile

EmmaWoodlouse Fri 21-Aug-15 20:56:35

Goodness, there's been a lot of response to this one! Thank you all for your thoughts. I'm beginning to think it wouldn't be as big a problem as I'd first thought. My worries were probably based on the fact that when DS2 started primary school, DS1 only seemed to want to hang around with him and didn't play so much with his friends from the previous year - but of course they are very different people now, and although DS1 isn't very outgoing, he doesn't actually seem to need much company.

Of course the ideal thing would be if they had been 2 school years apart, not 1 (which they would be if DS2 had been 2 weeks overdue!) - then we would have longer to see how DS1 is getting on before DS2 has to make any decisions. But from everything that's been said here, I am a bit more confident that it wouldn't be a reason to rule out this course.

StonedGalah Sat 22-Aug-15 18:21:29

OP in the nicest possible way, why do you get to decide what course ds2 takes? I think you need to take a step back and let them do whatever it is they want. And is it so bad if two brothers want to hang out?

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