My second youngest is doing her Leaving Cert this year. The older two children were easy enough when it came to college, they went off and studied fairly close to home. This daughter, however, is proving to be a bit trickier.
She’s very bright and wants to do medicine. I admire the effort she has made
She has decided that she possibly wants to study in the UK.
She’s very bright and wants to do medicine. I admire the effort she has made. Pretty much on her own she did the UCAT application, including personal statements, exams and all the rest.
Her application has been made and now she’s talking about the possibility of going over to do interviews.
At this point I’m starting to get a bit worried about the whole thing. I support her in wanting to be a doctor, but there’s no way we can afford to send her to college in the UK.
It’s very expensive even here in Ireland but at least she’d get a bit of a grant to go, which would take the pressure off.
I don’t think the UK will ever be a feasible backup plan
There’s no way I can see us being able to finance her in college in the UK. I’ve had some small discussions with her about this and she says she’ll work while she’s over there but that still won’t cover the tens of thousands of pounds in fees, never mind rent and everything else on top of it.
She’s also said this is only a backup, that she’s hopeful of getting medicine in Ireland. But still, I don’t think the UK will ever be a feasible backup plan, so is there any point in her even going to the UK for interviews? I’d feel terrible dashing her plans but also is there any point in letting her put all this effort into something that’s not going to happen?
Have you any advice, Miriam?
Dear Mixed-up Mammy,
Thank you very much for getting in touch. Your daughter’s ambition and hard work is admirable, that is an overarching positive from this situation. However, I totally understand your worries regarding the financial side of these plans.
I could be wrong, but I do feel from your letter that your daughter is going full-steam ahead with this without much input from you
First and foremost, I think you need to sit down and have a good talk with your daughter about this. I could be wrong, but I do feel from your letter that your daughter is going full-steam ahead with this without much input from you.
It is genuinely great to see independence and forward thinking like this but you do both need to be on the same page and work together. So, as I have said, sit down and talk things through with her.
I think you should be upfront with her about the possibility of financing college in the UK. From a quick glance online, I see the cost of going to college in the UK for Irish citizens looks to be somewhere just under £10,000. Tell her that while you really appreciate her enthusiasm and willingness to have a part-time job over there, the fees may be too high. I know it will be hard news to deliver, however, I think there’s no point in letting her go for interviews if she will not be able to go in the end.
Overall, make sure to encourage her
That said, I do not believe in going into situations without a solution. I am aware that studying medicine in Poland or other EU countries, like Holland, is much more affordable than the UK, as is the cost of living over there. Would she be willing make this her backup plan instead? It might be a more viable option. Overall, make sure to encourage her – but not pressure her too much – to try and get medicine in Ireland, which might be easier all around.
Fair play to in being supportive of your daughter. She seems like a tuned in, determine lady. I am sure things will work out for her.
Wishing you all the best,