March 12


Last month I said goodbye to student life. I left PPA and my role on the Campus Action Team. In the previous month I have been incredibly busy (I still volunteer at Brighton Museum and work in the alumni office. I am also the UNISON Women’s Officer and do a lot of stuff with the blog).

I can’t quite believe I am no longer a student. I had been looking forward to being a university student for years and I had a lot of hopes/dreams tied up in my degree. Also, it feels a bit weird because everyone was expecting me to do great. I loved student life but I never felt like I truly fit in (which is totally to do with my mental health issues, rather than the university). Plus, being a part-time mature student is tough and balancing work, study, volunteering, family and other ad hoc union duties was too difficult for me.

At first I thought admitting my failure would be difficult. But I am actually feeling OK. Though, maybe if I get some free time in the future I might start to feel regret. I’ve often told people that getting to university was an achievement for me. Yes, I am one of those people who come from a background where I was taught to believe university was not for the likes of me. People didn’t think I could make it, I didn’t feel like I could make it, but I made it. I just made it, then I left.

I am also lucky enough to work with a really supportive teams (in the university and the museum) so I know that I’ll have plenty of opportunities to learn and develop in the future. University life has shown me that feeling cared for is important to my learning journey. I feel valued and I know that people I work with trust my abilities (even when I don’t).

Since leaving my course I have done some Early Years training at Brighton Museum. The training was delivered my Octopus Inc and it really tied together my interests in learning, accessibility, inclusion and art. I had never considered working with Early Years before but I actually found that I could apply a lot of my knowledge and experience into these sessions. It felt really exciting and rewarding to find out I wasn’t as clueless as I expected.

I also booked a spontaneous weekend trip to St Ives. It was beautiful and people there were lovely (especially the people who kept giving me free fudge and liqueur – you made my journey home much more enjoyable). The trip also gave me time to think about what to do with free time. On a train to Plymouth I sat opposite a lady (I wish I could remember her name, company or job role) who spoke about her role using art to work with people with disabilities. I also visited RAAR Emporium and spoke to the staff about using art to engage. St Ives was well worth the visit and I came home feeling reinvigorated.

I’ll leave this post here and write some more later on. I know I could easily end up writing about everything I’ve done in the past month and that would be boring to read (why have you come this far anyway?).

Posted March 12, 2016 by N¡na in category Uncategorized

About the Author

MA Inclusive Arts student, Partnership Officer in Kent, freelance blogger on the internet.

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