Anyone familiar with me is aware of how indecisive I’ve always been. Though I’d love to tell you I’ve gotten better at making a choice and committing to it, I can’t. And if you were to see what it’s like trying, as a family, to decide on where to go for dinner whenever I visit my parents, you’d probably think it’s genetic.
I wasn’t the only student who decided to forgo heading off to university, nor was I the first in the family. My two older sisters had done the same, the eldest of whom had been in the double cohort of 2003. All three of us graduated and returned to our respective schools for one semester before taking the rest of the year to work (in my case, at that green mermaid coffee company). Despite most of my friends moving on to begin post-secondary studies, I felt no guilt following the precedent set by my siblings.
Many high school students begin twelfth grade not only unsure of what institutions they’ll apply to, but unsure of whether they even want to apply. I was no different. As university presentations began and my friends nervously discussed the application process, I realized I, among quite a few others, just wasn’t ready.
School has enough difficulties without even worrying about what to do afterwards.
Some decide they’re not ready to leave home, others haven’t prepared for how costly education can be, and some others just cannot decide what to study. I fell into the latter category, but also knew some extra cash wouldn’t hurt either. By midway through the last year of high school, I decided I wouldn’t even bother applying to universities. I was so certain I was uncertain, that I knew the added pressure of applying and possibly being admitted to universities would be unnecessary.
In the end, it turned out to be the best decision I made.Because I had turned a blind eye to the programs offered by different universities, and I only knew I wanted to continue my studies in French, I had naturally assumed if I was going to stay in Ontario, I would have little choice but to go to the University of Ottawa. It was in an economics class during my semester back at high school that a student teacher mentioned “some university in Toronto where you can study in French”. Curiosity piqued, I began to do my research, and the rest is history.
Once again, I’m feeling the same uncertainty, much to the chagrin of my parents. Though I’ve considered various options for graduate studies, law school, another degree, or college, I can’t seem to make a decision. With the cost of education not getting any lower, I know if I’m going to continue my studies, I need to wait for some certainty to come back. Perhaps I’ll take a year off and teach abroad or seek work opportunities, or perhaps I’ll reapply to begin another degree at Glendon (deadline isn’t until August!), but it’s sure I won’t act until I’m confident.
For high school students who may be feeling this uncertainty as well, it’s good to keep in mind that whether you have yet to apply, or whether you’ve applied and been admitted, you can put this decision off and not worry. Folks love to say that once you take a year off, the likelihood of you ever going off to school will drop off. This isn’t true. If you’re ready to go and it’s the right decision for you, you’ll go. If you’ve already been admitted, and are having second thoughts, you can consider deferring your acceptance for a semester or a year, and join us on campus when you’re ready.