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Sonya Aurora Madan

Lead singer, Echobelly

Psychology, London Guildhall University

(formerly the City of London Polytechnic)

'Dad was a professor in India before he left and mum was a qualified teacher so I think they expected me to go to university. I chose psychology because it seemed interesting and I was keen to know a bit more about it. But it turned out to be all statistics and counting woodlice so I didn't really enjoy it. My heart wasn't in it but I stuck it out and got a 2-1. At one point I thought about changing to law but it meant doing an extra year.

"I decided instead to give myself an education in the university of life. I'd had a typical suburban middle class upbringing, pretty sheltered, and I really needed to get out of home and learn about things. People came from such different walks of life and I thought it was about time I found out what all my English friends were interested in. It was when we moved to Soho and that the fun really started, going out clubbing, discovering things, getting to know London properly. It was a great time, I remember waking up in the morning and finding people sleeping on the floor and trying to stay awake in lectures, I shared a double bed with my flatmate, we put a row of teddy bears down the middle.

"My biggest regret is that I was drifting. I had no idea about the big, bad world and I didn't have a clue what I wanted to do. I think that's far more common among students than people realise. What I truly wanted to do was out of my reach because I didn't know what it was. I also had no idea how quickly three years would pass: it's over before you know it. The music didn't happen till after I left. I was completely stuck for a while and did a series of odd jobs. I didn't go back home - once you've left it's almost impossible to accept the rules under which your parents expect you to live. If I was still drifting I think I'd look back and think I should have got my act together when I was a student.''