Homeschooled teenager going to college

Before I went to college I was terrified. I practiced what I thought I wanted to do (which was art). But I was still terrified as I didn’t have any GCSE’s at all. My lack of GCSE’s made me fear that my maths and English skills are not good enough and that could prevent me from getting onto a course.
Then when it came to the time I went to the college open day in my area with my mum. And I’m not going to lie… I was shaking with fear. When we went into the college it was packed full making me even more scared. We went over to the table where the tutors who speak about art were and sat down. We asked about the tutors about the course and they said that I would have to bring in an art book and then take a maths and English test. I left feeling even more terrified.

I decided that an art course was not for me. So me and my mum went to a different college’s sign up day. We came in the door at the college and saw the tables with tutors sat behind them talking to people about their courses. We saw a table with “Computing” on it. I love computers and the internet so we went over, sat down and spoke to the lady sat at the table. She told me what you did on the course. Animation, digital graphics, hardware, developing games everything I loved was on this course. We asked about the lack of GCSE’s and she told me that it doesn’t matter and that all of the students at the college do functional skills tests anyway. She showed us where we could go and sign up for the course. I filled in a form then we went and got my bus pass sorted out. I was relieved I had finally got a college course!
I was so scared when on induction day (first day) that on the bus there I was shaking. I walked into the door went to the computing area in one of the college buildings. Me and the other people on the course were shown where to go. When I was finally in a room with everyone else in the group I was in, nobody at all spoke other then the tutor for about an hour. The tutor told us the college’s rules and what to expect on the course. The tutor made us do some things to break the silence in the room so that people started talking to each other. Then when the first day was over I went home and told my mum about it. I was relieved that it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.
Over the next week or so people started making some friends in the group. I made a couple friends in the group and we started hanging out at the college. Having friends after so long of not having any was strange. I didn’t know what having older friends felt like until I went to college and was finally glad I had someone to do stuff with. I learned how to talk to people casually and it raised my confidence so much that I wasn’t scared of people anymore; I could go out to an event and not be scared at all.
Going to college has given me so many happy experiences that my fears feel so silly. My social life improved from talking to my mum and step dad to talking to friends that are my age! I know how scary that going to college can be and everyone who goes, even people who haven’t been home schooled, know this too. But it helps improve your life so much and you don’t know it until you go. I would recommend college to anyone as I have had so many good experiences.
By Adam aged 17, who was unschooled from age 14. In our area the HE groups consisted of young children, so we didn’t go to any as Adam got older. He has a younger brother who is a year younger than him who is also HE and an older brother who lives away from us who went to mainstream school.

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