Receiving Final Results
Thursday was results day for English Finalists at Warwick, which meant that it was a day of barely being able to concentrate on anything else while waiting for that email to come through with the all-important info everything has been building up to…
The English department’s system of releasing results changed slightly this year which also made everything a little more uncertain. Previously, there has been a list displayed at university which for first and second years simply said whether you have passed to the next year, and for finalists detailed the classification of their degree (eg First, 2.1, 2.2 etc). You would then have to contact your personal tutor for your individual marks, no matter what year you were in. However, as of this year the lists are no longer being displayed in this way so instead we had to wait for an email to appear in our inbox which would contain a link leading us to our results.
Some departments require students to go in person to collect their results, but I’m glad that the English department doesn’t do this as I think I would find this far more nerve-wracking than being able to hide at home and process the results in my own time.
I spent most of the day trying to keep myself busy – but mostly failing and refreshing my inbox every five minutes even though I knew I’d get a notification on my phone when I had a new email! There were a couple of close calls when I thought it had arrived but it just turned out to be a very boring marketing email instead…
In the end, at about 4:15 the email was sat in my inbox waiting for me – so I clicked the link and there, right at the top of the page, were the words ‘First class honours!’. I really wasn’t sure whether I would be getting a 2.1 or a First as my marks so far had been too close to tell and I hadn’t yet seen the results of my exam, so it took me a few minutes to process what I was reading!
Of course, I immediately had to call all of my family who were thrilled at the news but really didn’t seem very surprised and told me that they hadn’t expected anything less – talk about pressure!!
Results day is highly anticipated and somewhat terrifying no matter what stage of education you’re at – whether it’s your GCSEs, A-Levels, or university results you’re waiting for, the emotions surrounding the day are largely the same. For some, it will be a day which brings joy, but for others it may not be that straightforward. This is relevant even more so at university than at any of my previous stages of education. Many students will have job offers which depend on degree results, others will be under pressure from themselves and family to achieve a certain standard. But it’s important to remember that results really aren’t everything at university. Of course they’re important, I’m not undermining that at all, and to me it was still a big deal – but I was also fortunate enough not to have anything riding on them other than my own hopes. And as I heard from more and more people – whether it was good news or bad news – it got me thinking about everything you take away from university besides your actual degree. University changes your life – it makes you independent, you throw yourself into things you never contemplated doing before, you encounter new experiences almost daily, and over the course of three years you watch yourself change and grow up.
If the webpage had loaded and revealed a 2.1 for me, there would have been a few minutes of disappointment, because I would have known how close I was. But there would also – once the fog had cleared – have been an immense sense of pride for everything I had achieved over three years, both in my degree itself and in the long list of opportunities and experiences I’ve been involved with.
It will take a while for anyone disappointed in their results to see this, but the degree itself really isn’t everything. There’s so much more beside it which will stay with you forever. We all learn so much about ourselves, what we want, and how we work best. We develop skills in our involvement with societies, we learn teamwork from our involvement with sports, we consider new avenues of work and interests which we may never have even heard of before, and we learn to balance all of these different aspects of our lives. We enter as freshers, and we emerge as adults. All of that counts just as much as the numbers on a piece of paper you collect at the end.
I hope that with time everyone can see that. I hope that we all go on to places where all of this will help us in our futures. University is what you make it – it’s entirely your own – but it doesn’t make it easy. Just getting through it to the other side is a significant achievement in itself.
To everyone who has received their results, congratulations! And to anyone at any stage of their education still waiting for them – good luck, and always remember that you’re worth more than just letters or numbers.