Letter: Courses of action

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The Independent Online
Sir: The stories you print of how difficult it is to get into university arts courses this year are sad, but really no different from 1989, when our son and a friend of his from school were both turned down by their chosen universities for dropping a grade. Both were devastated but chose different solutions.

Our son's friend chose to go back to sixth-form college and retake the course that had let her down. The university demanded she get a fourth A-level, and so she did - in one year. She got her place at Royal Holloway College to do English and has just graduated with first-class honours.

Our son took the advice of the careers service and thought again about the course he wanted to take. In September he called a number of universities and found out those that would take him on the basis of his achieved grades (A-A-E). He then applied to those colleges and received four unconditional offers. He visited all four universities, then chose American Studies at Hull.

He is about to start his fourth year at Hull, having spent the past year at the University of California at Berkeley, where he made the 'Dean's List' for his academic work, and many friends.

So, being turned down is not the end of the world, although it seems so at the time. Take heart]

Yours sincerely,

JENNIFER HOFFMAN

Whitchurch, Hampshire

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