Making the decision about where you want to go to college or what you want to study at third level is not an easy task.  Most of us are seventeen or eighteen years old when we are asked to finally make up our minds about what it is that we would like to do with the rest of our lives.  For some of us, this choice is easy as we are fortunate enough to know what it is we have an interest or passion in doing.  For others, this choice is not quite so simple.


When I started secondary school I wanted to be an architect.  At the time this seemed like the perfect job for me.  I loved the idea of designing houses and having to be precise and meticulous with my measurements and drawings.  It seemed the dream until I found out that I wasn’t able to take technical graphics due to a clashing in class times.  I was upset at first but later this misfortune worked out to be for the best.  After my first year I realised that technical graphics was not what I expected it to be and I no longer wanted to be an architect.


Transition year soon came along and I travelled to Edinburgh to shadow a dentist for my first work experience.  After just a week of working with him I decided that dentistry was for me.  I had seen everything from tooth extractions to annual check ups and was convinced that this was what I wanted to do in my life – especially after my assisting NYC based braces doctor some time later.


However my dreams of becoming a dentist were short lived.  Just a few months later I journeyed on my next work experience to the Royal College of Surgeons.  It was here that I fell in love with medicine.  Everything about it appealed to me; the people, the lectures, the surgeries, even the hospitals.  It was as if I had found my calling.  I came home a complete transformed person.  My parents barely recognised me and thought my new career path to be one of some amusement, as I had spent my whole life prior to that moment telling them that I would never take after my father and become a doctor.  Yet here I was after five days in the RCSI wanting nothing more than to pursue a life in medicine.


I spent the next two years studying hard and in sixth year I applied for medicine and sat both my HPAT and Leaving Certificate.  Unfortunately I was unsuccessful with my endeavours.

What now cut from paper on background

What to do next?… I was unsure.  I had options; I could accept my place in science, resist my Leaving Certificate, take a year out or try taking the A levels.  After a lot of thought and research into each of the different routes, I decided I would resit my Leaving Certificate and try again.


It was that time of year again, I had to fill out my application and apply for my courses.  Just like the first time, I filled up my application with medicine and science courses and when the time came, I re-sat my HPAT and Leaving Certificate.  Shortly after re-sitting my Leaving Certificate in June there was a change of mind window for applications open in July.  Being both worried and paranoid that I might have filled out my application incorrectly I logged back into it to make sure everything was in order.


As I looked through each of my courses looking up their course codes in prospectus’s, I came across a BA Joint Honors Degree in National University of Ireland Maynooth and in the University College Dublin.  Having read through their course outlines I suddenly found myself conflicted once more.  The BA Joint Honors Degree really appealed to me as a part of me always wanted to do something in business just as much as I had wanted to do something in medicine.


I decided I was going to change my application and apply for a BA Joint Honors Degree,  but in which college? … Having decided to study Economics and German for my degree I looked into what each college had to offer.  In the end UCD won out.


From an academic side, both Economics and modern languages in UCD ranked in the top 100 spots of the QS World University Subject Rankings at the time.  Not only that, having sat my Leaving Certificate twice I had a studied a total of ten subjects, none of which were Economics or German.  This was not an issue though.  In UCD I was not required to have studied either subject before.  UCD also offered me over 60 sports clubs and 70 societies that I could get involved with in my spare time.  These being equally important to me as college is not solely all about academics.  UCD not only being closer to home, is like a little town of its own.  With more than 25,000 people studying here, 1,600 of which study each year in the BA Joint Honors Programme, it is a fantastic place to met so many different people from all over the country and the world.  Despite the college being so big there is still a strong sense of community on campus.  For all of these reasons UCD suited me best as a person, and is why I chose UCD as my college to study in.


It is not always easy knowing which path in life you wish to take.  Paths don’t always run in straight lines.  They bend, turn, and have bumps along the way.  You meet dead ends, causing you to take a few steps back in order to continue on your way.  They even come to intersections, where you will be made to chose a new direction.  In the end though, every path leads on to another and there is always more than one route to take you to where you want to go.