I started University at La Trobe as excited and as enthusiastic as any student. I bought my books, and packed my bag and went to my first lecture in the West Lecture Theatre (WLT) prepared to be a sponge, soaking up every bit of information I could.
But naturally, as I’m sure you’re aware, the haze cleared and I saw what University was really like – an absolute challenge.
I was studying Psychological science, and the course was pretty cool. After doing Psychology in high school I thought that I’d really be into it, but as interesting as it was, it really wasn’t something I was passionate about… and that really sucked.
So as far as I could see, I was left with a few options.
- Drop out forever and never return.
Alright, I might have been over-reacting with that one.
- Stay in psychology and just tough it out.
Life is way too short to be doing things that don’t make you happy, which leaves me with:
- Change my course.
Of course, you sit there thinking “is this guy for real? Change his course? Is that even allowed?!”
Well, yeah. It is.
I started going through course guides faster than a year 12 student with the VTAC deadline breathing down their neck; but I just couldn’t decide.
So, I took a different approach. An honest approach.
I looked at what kind of things I really love. I love to write, I love keeping up to date with issues around me, I have an almost concerning love affair with YouTube (both from a consumer and content creating standpoint), and I love sharing my story with people.
So I started to look at courses and subjects that would allow me to do those things.
It took me a while, but I found it: A Bachelor of Media and Communication majoring in Journalism.
Alright, I thought, what did I have to do to transfer into it?
Towards the end of each semester La Trobe run a session for people who are thinking about transferring their course; and if you keep an eye on your emails you’ll see a notification of it in the weekly student systems email.
I attended the session and they reassured me that I was not the first one to feel like their subject wasn’t for them, and proceeded to give me all the details and forms I needed to transfer my course. The rest, they said, was up to me.
In order to transfer your course you need to have decent enough grades, which is something that I just didn’t have at the mid-year point.
So, I had a whole extra semester of a course I didn’t really enjoy to try and put my grades as high as I could. Boy, it really wasn’t a great spot to be in.
The cool thing about University though, is that your lecturers and tutors are more than willing to help you. So I knuckled down, got the help I needed, and I hustled until the end of year, giving everything to up my grades so I could do what I was passionate about.
I re-applied for my transfer and then waited, rather anxiously, to get the news.
I was successful, and am absolutely loving my course this year.
So, from a fellow unsure student to (possibly) another:
If you aren’t happy in your course it’s okay to transfer. It’s okay to do it in your first year, it’s okay in your second year and it’s okay in your third year. At the end of the day, this is your life and it’s short, so you might as well spend it doing things that you love.
If you’re interested in a course transfer, there’s a few places you can go to to for more information, from regular course transfers to campus or even University transfers.
La Trobe’s website has some handy stuff: http://www.latrobe.edu.au/students/enrolment/course-transfer
And of course, you can always ask for more help from ASK La Trobe (located in the ground floor of the Library), who you can contact in person, over the phone or online:
I hope you’re loving your course, but if not, don’t stress. You’ll find it.