Posted Thursday 7 August 2014
When Carly Strange faced an uncertain future after receiving her A-level results last year, she remained adamant nothing was going to get in the way of her dreams of attending university. "I wanted a goal to strive towards and to study for a degree that would help shape my future career," Carly explained. "Although it turned out I hadn't done quite as well in my exams as I'd hoped, I wasn't going to let that get me down for long. That's when I decided to turn to Clearing."
A budding news reporter, the 19 year old, who originally comes from Princes Risborough in Buckinghamshire, focused her Clearing quest on finding a place on a media and cultural studies degree. "My favourite A-level subject was media studies, so it made sense to me to specialise in that area," Carly said. "When I discovered that Kingston University offered a BA(Hons) in Media and Cultural Studies, I saw an opportunity to follow and broaden my interests without moving too far away from home. It seemed to be the obvious choice."
Hitting the Clearing telephone lines on results day proved far less intimidating than Carly had anticipated. "I knew it would be really important to remain calm and have all my details, such as my Clearing number, to hand," Carly recalled. After speaking to one of Kingston University's Clearing hotline operators, she was put in touch with her prospective faculty and received the offer of a place a short time later. "The hotline operator on the other end was really friendly and eager to help. My call also showed me why it's so important for students going through the process to be organised and have all the relevant information to hand to be able to get the most out of the process," Carly said.
Since enrolling ay Kingston University almost a year ago Carly has thrived, attaining high marks in every module she has completed so far. Outside her studies, she also finds time to be a student representative - a role that requires her to be the principal point of contact between staff and students - and to study French as part of the university's language scheme. "I've learned so much about how the news is shaped and how the actions of the media affect the world since starting my degree," Carly said. "Coming through Clearing definitely put me on the right track for the future and I'm absolutely determined to work hard and excel during the next two years."
Senior lecturer Hager Weslati, who offered Carly her place at Kingston University's Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, said she had been proud to witness the way she had flourished in the first year of her degree. "I remember Carly in my first class on trending media stories. Much to everyone's surprise, she steered the discussion away from celebrity bashing and eloquently defended her great enthusiasm for pop stars and fan cultures," Dr Weslati recalled. "By the time our first class was over, the debate continued in the corridors. I wasn't surprised afterwards when I saw Carly on the student-staff committee as our first year student representative or when she achieved outstanding marks at the end of the year.
"One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is seeing students like Carly blossom," Dr Weslati added. "Without Clearing, I wouldn't have had the chance to teach such a talented young person."