Tough decision for DD(152 Posts)
My DD is in in her first year at a large Russell group uni, however she doesn't like the city and hasn't settled in well at all, the people she lives with in halls have been a nightmare and she is adamant that she no longer wants to house share ever again and wants to transfer to the uni in our home town for next year.. The issue is that there isn't a Russell group uni in our home town so she would be attending a lesser rated university compared to the one she is at now. I am so proud of her for sticking this year out even though she has been so unhappy and I just want her to be happy but would this be a crazy move? My head says that I should convince her to stay but I hate seeing her so miserable.
I'm just wondering really how other people would feel about their dc doing this.
Can she not ask to change accommodation if the people she is sharing with are a nightmare? Mine did - made all the difference. But if she really wants to move, think twice about persuading her to stay at her current uni. What's more important - your daughter's happiness or the badge on the university's notepaper? I know Russell Group unis are supposed to be 'better' but are they so much better that they are worth a student life of misery? If she is not happy she is unlikely to perform at her best anyway.
Russell Group universities aren't the only good ones. Does your local uni have a respected course? It will depend on the subject how much the uni matters.
I think this really has to be her decision. Is there a student advice team she can talk to?
Is she 2nd term ? i.e. she has done up until Christmas and then until now ? (when you say "this year" )
I am sorry to hear she is so unhappy.
Is there no-one on her course she has met & likes? Has she made any friends at all? If not & she is truly miserable then maybe it's not worth continuing.
If it's just the accommodation side that is causing problems could she get a place on her own next year?
It's better doing well at home, than doing badly far away, I think.
Definitely transfer but make sure she has a good plan/ work experience in chosen field/ summer internship because thats what most employers look for after uni anyway.
I would also check 're the course at the local uni. Is it good? Is it accredited if need be (my field would require this but most wouldn't)? Happiness does matter as does the course of course.
I agree about asking 're change of accommodation but I suppose that depends on how happy RD is with her course too.
Does she like her course and her classmates ? Is she doing well, because she needs to pass first year to have any chance of a transfer into second year elsewhere.
And what about her social life and all the friends she has made ? Has she joined clubs and student societies ? She would lose all that .
If she likes the course , it seems a bit risky to transfer becauee she doesn't like her flat mates. Yes they can make your life a nightmare, so that's why lots of people change. She doesn't need to right off all flatmates everywhere for ever just because her current ones are a PITA. That's daft .
And I'm struggling to see how you could dislike a whole city - there must be other parts of it that she would like. Hating a whole city is a bit like hating all engineers or all Australians.
Much better just to change her accommodation and the area in which she lives. Or she might be swapping one set of problems for another .
She does seem very prone to black and white thinking and I wonder if you could help her explore some other solutions to her problems.
Let her change, life is too short to be unhappy. Better a good degree and good mental health from a none RG university than a bad degree and crap mental health - or a good degree and crap mental health. Ds is about to turn down an offer at a brilliant RG university because of the city and go to a lesser establishment; its hard but he now has my support.
I think if she is adamant you can't let her , it's up to her, it's her life
I would not encourage her to move home if that's her plan. It would make life harder I think in the long run for her to move out and gain new friendships (my school friend did this and now is still at home 4 years later) if she hates the city and large uni try and find a new one to move to elsewhere in the country
I did 5 weeks at a large University which I hated, was desperately unhappy, came home and had a gap year, saved up some money and re applied to smaller colleges nearer home. Started again and was so much happier, did my 4 year teaching degree and don't regret a thing. Sometimes you have to consider mental well being above status and prestige. I think she's done amazingly well to last a year when she's so unhappy, I would be supporting her if she feels she needs the change. My parents were supportive, took me back home, and backed my decision, which made the world of difference.
My DD did this. Stuck out the first year, though she was close to a breakdown at times, then transferred to a Uni close to home to complete her degree. It was absolutely the right choice for her and has had no negative impacts on her future. She has a very good career and has just returned from several months of solo travelling. If your DD makes the choice to move I would support her all the way.
Could you help her rent somewhere on her own for 6 months, see how she feels towards the end of the tenancy then decide?
My daughter is in year 12 and came back on friday having had a talk from someone who is the industry she wished to go into. The lady said Russell unis aren't everything and in fact the lesser universities get more funding and usually have less students so therefore more one to one opportunities.
Research is the key. Check out the reviews of the uni in your town and the course statistics.
I would suggest to her that she researches local university courses to see if they're any good but make the final decision later on if it's possible.
Have you looked into the actual course at your local uni? For graduate job hunting, its about the quality of the course, not the overall uni, especially for anything vocational. I'd say the most important think after your DD's happiness is whether the alternative alternative course is accredited by the appropriate professional body.
I agree it is her choice. If you ask me how I would feel if this were my DC - I think I would want to know they had tried to ascertain what was making them so unhappy & have they spoken to someone at the university
about it to see if there were options at this stage. So e.g. if the accommodation is a huge issue , has she spoken to someone about changing? If she does not like the location / city / town / campus etc - is it her current circumstances which are affecting her view or were she with like minded souls in a different living environment would she feel differently? Does she like the course ? Again things can collide to make all of these things seem like one problem when in reality is may be possible to break the problem down into smaller and more maneagable chunks. Ultimately of course , if where she is now is simply wrong for her , then going somewhere else , RG or not , sounds right - but if it were my DC I would hope they had tried to access the help / advice available to them from the university before making the decision to leave. Not always easy when you are younger rather than (in my case) very much older, I do know. I wish her well, however it works out.
I realise I have x posted with some others - apologies.
Russell Group is fairly meaningless when it comes to individual circs. Look at what she is studying and what the league tables say about universities for that course.
It should be easy to transfer to another uni with a comparable course.
I would be worried about her reaction to house sharing. It seems pretty extreme to say she never wants to share with anyone again. Learning to share/compromise with others is part of growing up.
My DD was exactly like this the first year... At least twice a term she'd ring on a complete downer saying how much she hated the course/flatmates/lecturers that never turned up/cost/etc... They usually coincided with a deadline or similar.
She's in a small town a LONG way from home & lack of student life making it a proper uni experience left her thinking she'd made a huge mistake.
We spent hours FaceTiming & talking things through. In my own experience, I'd get off the phone & spend the next few days stressing out over it, only to see instagram or FB posts of her having a laugh with her mates at uni! Exasperating!
She decided quite late in her first year that she was definitely staying on, (she'd toyed with coming back & doing a foundation course at a local college, transferring unis & everything in between) & started her 2nd year, in a house share with people she likes (mostly) with a much better, more positive attitude.
Don't get me wrong, she still has her neg moments but they don't seem nearly as 'end of the world' like.
After discussing this with other parents, I wasn't alone! It's quite a common thing, apparently. Feeling your pain OP!
One more little point - is she (assuming 2nd term in) finding the work hard - could that be the problem ( or part of it) because finding the course hard I would have thought will impact on other aspects of the whole experience. Not saying it is the problem, just a thought. It is her decision but as you asked I might gently explore this ( if it were my DC)
This term can be difficult and stressful with the first exams etc.
The first thing I would encourage your DD to look at is changing accommodation is she is so unhappy with her flatmates.
Is she enjoying her course?
She probably has nothing to lose financially by staying until Easter now. Then normally the remaining half of the fees are due and next terms accommodation fees - but look on her university website to check the dates etc.
Her mental health is the most important thing here and you need to keep an eye on whether she is still coping.
Also are there other universities that aren't your local one but still possibly commutable? So if she went there she could try living away from home but know that she has a back up option of being able to commute?
My DD dropped out last year at Easter. She hated her course and just wasn't coping with any of the 'experience'. Her mental state was not good. She got a job in a shop for a few months and she applied again through Ucas for a very different course and picked a university and city she liked and knew well. She is now less than an hour away from home and comes home very regularly. She is a different person this year and is enjoying life again. She also knows she can commute if she wants to. Yes, she is at a university that is ranked lower than her original one but it really doesn't matter that much. A 2.1 from this university would be worth a lot more than a 3rd and a mental breakdown from her original university.
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