UCAS Statements and COVID
This is a question that we get a lot from candidates who are early in the process be that for their UCAS application or for a job application. It came up in a call with a candidate today, so we thought it was worth of a blog post!
In previous years, we would have pointed to the value of work experience, internships, or volunteering. However, due to the current pandemic, a lot of these options are not available.
In this post, we have focused more on the options for UCAS applicants, but we will add to the blog over the weekend with some wider thoughts.
There is still plenty of things that you can do to help prepare and show admissions teams that you are interested and committed.
- Learn a new skill
- Seek out the opportunities
You can take this time to find out more about courses and the universities that you may be interested in. Virtual tours and virtual open days offer a great way to find out more about the universities that you be interested in.
As a result of COVID, many universities have had to transition to a virtual offering, so they will be keen to help.You don’t have to travel, and you can take all the time you need to review what is on offer. Sometimes with a physical visit it is easy to get flustered and forget to check something, or ask the question you have prepared. With the virtual offering, you get the chance to review a greater number of options and you can take all the time you need.
The last couple of months have seen an explosion of webinars, Instagram Q&As, Facebook Live Sessions. These will feature current students and lecturers, as well as members of the admissions teams. Make sure you take advantage of these! And don’t worry if you cannot make it to all of them, if you have a clash, most are recorded and can be watched after.
Learn a New Skill
You may not be able to be in the classroom at the moment, but that does not mean that you are prevented from learning.
Perhaps there is an area outside the curriculum that you are passionate about, want to learn more about or would like to improve your skills. With platforms like Udemy, EdX and many other platforms offering free courses this is great opportunity. It is also a great way to show admissions teams your commitment to learning, your passions and also that you are an independent learning and a new starter.
Plus there are only some many series anyone can watch on Netflix/Disney Plus/Amazon Prime! Why not put your brain to good use and learn a new skill?
Seek out the opportunities
Yes, COVID has significantly reduced opportunities but it has not completely removed them. Think of it as a pause, not a cessation.
Take some time to think about your experiences to date, and what you would want to be showcasing in your personal statement. Is it worth following up with the organisations to find out when they may be accepting volunteers or running work experience?
You may have to think creatively. If you are not going to be able to obtain the direct experience, is there another way? What are the transferrable skills and interests you want to be demonstrating in your statement? Can you get involved in community projects that are aligned to the same goals? Everyone is aware of the impact of COVID will have on students, but it also offers great opportunities to people to show their adaptability and flexibilty.
Remember, if you need our help – we have a full range of services available and offer a 100% refund guarantee if you do not wish to proceed after the first call