Category Archives: Student Stories

SO? By ex-Go Higher student & current tutor, Barbara Milne

So, we’re on the middle day of Go Higher induction week, here at the University of Liverpool. ‘So’ seems an apt word for today. Any initial nervousness, on all sides, I think, has abated a little and our new students have settled down to some group work. So, why am I so hung up on this word “So”?    It’s nostalgia if I’m honest. I’m a former Go Higher student. One of the narratives I was lucky enough to study during my time on the course, was Seamus Heaney’s translation of the epic poem Beowulf.

Reflections on Go Higher by Lauren (class of 2017)

I was really lucky to get onto Go Higher because I only found out about its existence within a few days of the application closing date. I had applied for another Access to Higher Education course and was dreading the childcare implications (I’m a single mother) since it ran over three days. Go Higher, however, is one full day a week and much more manageable, and I’ve had time to organize childcare for when I start my degree full-time in September. To be honest, I couldn’t believe my luck at having discovered Go Higher for another reason –

A Go Higher Student’s Personal Story by Dominic Henry

I’ll start with some information about me. In school I made the same cocky mistakes a lot of teens do; i.e. I decided there was no point going to school because, well, what could they possibly teach me that I didn’t already know? So, I spent all of 3 hours a day there before deciding that that was enough. As you can imagine my exams didn’t go great, in fact I failed them all. But that was okay as I started working in a hairdresser’s a week after I finished school and was going to college to train as a stylist. I did this and qualified as planned – but that’s when life hit me full time.

A personal story by Graham Moran…

After leaving my degree studies at 18 years old, feeling like I never wanted to return to any form of higher education ever again, I felt wrung out, tired and wanted to explore the other side of the pavement. As the years passed, I felt a sense of disappointment at myself for not pursuing education further. I had always enjoyed it, at school and at A-Level, and aged 31, felt the time was right for me to take action and stop pondering ‘what if?’ After hitting the proverbial glass ceiling working within hospitality, I made the decision to apply for Go Higher at the University of Liverpool in the summer of 2015 with the aim of furthering myself academically. 

Twelve months later – by Lisa Hopkins, class of 2016

Twelve months ago I was lost. Having left school at 15 I had no GCSEs, I found myself turned away from many institutions and possible career paths because of this. As taking GCSEs as an over 25 is no longer funded I was caught between a proverbial rock and a hard place. I had almost begun to believe that this was my lot in life… But then I found Go Higher, an Access to the Humanities course at the University of Liverpool. What’s more, my lack of qualifications did not exclude me from entry.

Taking the scenic route to Higher Education by Alex Carabine

I never thought I would attend university.  I had so many failed attempts at higher education behind me that I was convinced I wasn’t smart enough, brave enough or good enough to be able to get through A levels, let alone onto an access course or even – heaven help me! – a degree.

I’m not sure how I worked up the courage to apply for Go Higher; I remember holding my breath and closing my eyes when I clicked “send” on my online application.

Nerves, trepidation & expectation: students’ reflections on their first day on Go Higher

Starting something new nearly always prompts anxious feelings; however returning to study after a long time away from education is probably more daunting than most. We asked some past Go Higher access students, now all half way through their degree at the University of Liverpool, how they remembered their first day with us:

From Lightning to a Scholarship in a Flash by Bernadette McBride

It only seems like yesterday that I was heading to the Go Higher department of the University of Liverpool for the first time, to be interviewed for a place on their fast-track humanities based access course. My journey and preparation for the interview was blighted by my train station having been struck by lightning resulting in me being several hours late (a likely story) but true. A panicked phone call to Go Higher’s trusty administrator Anne and some serious public transport navigation later, I arrived at my destination.

My Go Higher Story by Michelle Bomba, class of 2014

Go Higher is a fantastic opportunity which gives you the chance to go to University as a mature student through studying different modules such as Philosophy, History, English and a wide variety of other subjects. The door is then opened for you to obtain the credits needed to apply for a University place and study the degree of your choice. So why do Go Higher?

The close of one chapter and the start of another. By Helen Mallinson

Yesterday I handed in my last three assignments for Go Higher, sat my history exam and said farewell to the tutors, mentors and fellow students I have shared the last nine months with. Go Higher is a brilliant course run by the University of Liverpool which allows mature students (anyone from 21 years up) to gain access to university so they can get the degree they’ve always wanted to do. These students come from all kinds of backgrounds and have all sorts of stories to tell about how and why they missed out on university education the first time round.