My Clearing Journey | Toni, Laoise, Koran

Toni, Koran and Laoise share with us their experience of coming to the University of Roehampton through Clearing.

You can start your Clearing journey today with us by visiting our website

Toni Pearson

BA Primary Education– 2nd year

I had applied for another uni in 2018 and was offered a place but failed the government’s skills tests that were compulsory back then, so I couldn’t enrol.  I put it to the back of my mind because I was working really hard in hospital and struggling a bit.  Then in the summer of 2019 I got job in a nursery and realised all I’d ever wanted to do was teach. So, I went onto UCAS knowing absolutely nothing about clearing and fearing I’d left it too late for that September.  However I called the Roehampton Clearing line on a Friday, and was offered an interview on the following Monday!  I just thought crikey, this is really happening!  I’m the type of person who always asks a lot of questions, and the lady I spoke to answered everything immediately and made it seem clear and simple.  All the info turned up as promised, and I was sent a list of what I had to do.  I was also applying to another uni at the same time, but they were asking me to upload this here, that there, and making it more complicated. It also was reassuring that the same lady stayed in constant contact with me throughout.   It was such a relief because I was 25 and had put off uni since school because I was scared of everything to do with academia, thanks to being dyslexic. The normal UCAS process is quite long winded, so going through Clearing felt like a fast-track and was definitely the right route for me.

Now I’m in my second year and it’s been great.  The first year was a huge learning process, but being dyslexic I was given academic support straight away, and the education staff  always ‘held my hand’ if needed. I never felt alone, I could always phone a tutor and get a reply.  I’ve even put myself forward as Department Rep for Education now – not bad for someone who’s scared of academia! 

Koran Morrison

BA Creative Writing – 1st year

I’m currently finishing my first year at Roehampton as a Creative Writing and English Literature student, and I applied through Clearing last summer. My experiences with Clearing here at Roehampton have shown me that the University is extremely receptive, and it must be a very understanding bunch in charge. I struggled in sixth form with my mental and physical health and my grades suffered, but my teachers were recommending various different paths. I was still in quite an emotional state when I applied to Roehampton in August, and someone from the Clearing team immediately got back to me. A week later, I had an unconditional offer.

It was an impulsive decision, honestly, and I saw it as my only chance to turn things around. I was terrified of the result, but now I have no doubt that applying was the best decision I could have made. There has been a huge difference in my attitude towards work, studying, and if I’m honest, life in general. Other people have noticed that I’m maturing, taking more risks and striving to do what I truly want instead of getting overwhelmed and giving up. Roehampton has offered support at so many hurdles. I’ve been consistently proud of my grades throughout this year, and overall, I think this chance has put me on a completely different path in life – and I’m definitely liking the view!

I’m glad that, of all places, I chose Roehampton. I’ve had endless support from tutors, I’ve made so many incredible friends, course conveners have always been really responsive and ready to help in whatever way they can. I’m honestly so thankful to those in charge of Clearing, and I guarantee that I’m not the only one who thought they were out of options before they called!

Laoise Holohan

BA Classical Civilisation – 3rd year

I wasn’t going to go to university. I’d had enough of the education system following a bout of medical issues, so I worked as a waitress and then went on to try my hand at Camp America, where I was a camp counsellor in Massachusetts. While there I visited the NYC Natural History Museum, and looking at the exhibits I thought how I always really enjoyed history and antiquity. My secondary school only taught modern history, which I was far less interested in. I was considered “unacademic”, largely due to my poor attendance and health related issues, so I was dissuaded from pursuing a strict, disciplined course like Classics, and when I went on to UCAS all the top options seemed to require A* and As.  Then on a whim, I checked clearing for an Ancient History course and Roehampton was the first university listed. I called and spoke directly to a student, who was lovely and chatted me through the online enrolment process. So, I finished my application on a Greyhound bus between New York and Chicago, and by the time I got to Philadelphia, about seven days later (and on my birthday!) I was accepted into Roehampton. I had a week left of my USA trip, which I spent searching for WiFi at hostels to organise my student finance and accommodation over the phone with my Mom (who was as baffled as she was delighted), and I arrived back just in time for enrolment. Sadly I was far too jetlagged to appreciate Freshers’ Week!

I’ve made the most of student life here. I was Program Rep three years running, the Students’ Union Environmental and Sustainability Officer and Chair of the Sustainability Working Group. I co-founded and ran the Amnesty International Society and was a Bystander Intervention Lead as well as working  as a caller on the Roehampton Together Fund. I’ve spoken at the Women’s Conference and attended the Roehampton Leaders Conference.

..And the only reason I even went to University was because of Clearing!

The University of Roehampton changes lives by helping our students to develop the confidence, knowledge and values they need for a successful and fulfilling life. We produce world-class research that helps us understand the world and change it for the better.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.