Finishing high school and starting college or sixth form is quite a scary experience for all of us, and a leap in which we hesitate to take in fear of what a who we're leaving behind. For some of us, high school is a great experience with great memories, and for others it's not, however in my experience there are still times when I miss it and starting college was a very nerve wracking time. I have just finished my first year of sixth form and I am starting upper sixth/A2/year 13 at the end of June, therefore I wanted to give some tips and tricks as to how to deal with going in to college/sixth form and things to remember.
Number 1 - Do not underestimate the work load. The work is something that will differ greatly from high school, there will be definitely be times when you are stressed beyond belief but going into college with a mindset that means you are self aware of how much you are about to do- especially with heavy essay based subjects like my own, is a good skill to have.
Number 2- You can always change what you're doing! Most colleges, especially my own, the subjects I chose were not set in stone and I was given the option to change them throughout the first 4 months. This is common and most places give you the option to change, drop, and pick up different courses in order to suit you, and there's no harm in doing that! So if you've already applied and are having regrets, do not worry about it, it's not 100% finalised.
Number 3- Be prepared! Make sure to purchase all the stationary you'll need. Personally I went a bit overboard with this and bought far too much, but hey, better safe than sorry right? But the amount of stationary and notebooks you have will be important, things aren't really provided for you at college, you are treated as an adult and therefore you're expected to be one, everything is your responsibility and if you lose things you have to replace them on your own.
Number 4- You will make friends no matter who you are! In my high school experience I only really had one proper friend, I didn't fit in much and I certainly wasn't one the populars. I got by and people liked me but it wasn't a great experience. However sixth form/college is amazing for me. I have a friend group of about 15/20 people and we're all so close, the good thing about college is it gives you the option to socialise a lot more, you have free periods and more time to hang out with friends and study together which makes it all the more enjoyable. But in my experience everyone I know has made a tight group of friends, and I have many friends outside my group that consist of classmates and mutual friends, it's really a different experience.
Number 5- Don't let it scare you. Being the young ones again can be daunting especially as the age is from 16-19 and in some respects that's quite a large age group. At first this can seem really intimidating, but you get used to it, you mould and it becomes a great experience. Just remember to breathe.
Sixth form has so far been the best experience of my life and nothing as of yet has hindered that, sure there will be dramas but nothing like what it was in high school, it's mainly exam stress and relationship problems, there's a lack of rumours and bullying, especially at my college anyhow, there's none at all. Sixth form is not as daunting as it seems, and it's normal to be nervous, but remember to stay calm and enjoy your two/three years there, because they are great.
Teenagers With Experience is an organisation created to provide teenagers with a platform to share and help others from their own experiences while also educating others on different topics. We aim to provide a safe space to all teenagers around the world and support others. You can contact us via email, social media or our contact form found on our home page.