By Tilly Rose
So, obviously rejection sucks. There's nothing I can do to take that away but you know what, part of dealing with rejection, is acknowledging just that...it really does suck.
The bit to remember - that feeling in the pit of your stomach, the one which sort of drops every time you think about said 'rejection', well I can promise you, it won't last forever.
If you applied to Oxford Uni last term and don't get the result you're hoping for next week, you may well feel:
You'll probably look back on all those months spent working, prepping, living and breathing your subject and think it was all a complete and utter waste of time. I would have felt exactly the same. Oxford Uni was my dream and whatever anyone said, I knew that being rejected would feel like the worst thing ever.
In many applicants' minds 'Oxford' holds this sort of mystical fantasy; a place you can never really let yourself believe you'll get into but yet the yearning to be there remains strong. And yes, it's a great uni but the truth is, there are so many great unis across the UK. If you end up elsewhere you will still get the chance to:
* Move away from home
* Make new friends
* Delve into your favourite subject
* Join clubs & societies
* Have endless books/resources at your disposal
* Have a buzzing social life
* Live in a cool, new city
* Graduate with a brilliant degree
How do you know that Tilly? Well, I know from experience - I have seen applicants go through this process again and again and those who haven't been accepted by Oxford Uni have learnt so much during the process that they have been snatched up by other great universities, either initially or through clearing. Friends of mine ended up elsewhere and they had the best time, all feeling a true connection with their uni and the amazing people they met along the way.
If Oxford does remain your absolute dream, there is the option of reapplying or something I never considered at the time but I now see as a brilliant alternative - apply for a masters! Masters' students have the opportunity to be part of a college, join all the clubs and societies on offer, work in the beautiful libraries, take part in Oxford's unique traditions, eat in fancy halls and swan around in gowns. So, if you aren't accepted at undergrad, all is not lost!
Most of all, if you find out you haven't been accepted next week - allow yourself to feel upset, get that frustration out - sometimes life just doesn't feel fair and it's ok to acknowledge that. Once that's out the way, brush yourself down and start to see 'rejection' and 'redirection'. Use this as an opportunity to make an exciting new plan - look into different unis, consider a gap year, look at masters' courses in Oxford to set that as a new goal in your mind.
Getting to interview is an incredible achievement and you already have so much to be proud of. This process will have developed you in ways you can't even see yet and I know that whatever the result next week, you are heading for great things!