I am very drawn to a career that involves working with other people and I feel I would be best suited to social work rather than nursing or medicine. I have a positive empathy with people of all ages and find it very easy to talk to people and put them at their ease. At the same time I believe I have strong problem solving skills and could apply these to help people in times of great need and distress to be able to see a way forward.
With that long-term goal in mind I first want to expand my academic knowledge by studying sociology at university. My A levels in history, philosophy and Religious Studies have enabled me to learn more about the social interactions between people in modern cultures and also between people who lived in the past. This has been very thought provoking and I want to explore further the way that class, gender and race affect the place of an individual in their society.
The role of the welfare system in today’s society in the UK is also a major interest of mine. Compared to the 19th century, when the poor were stigmatised and subjected to appalling conditions, we now have an overburdened system that is struggling. Making decisions within the system is difficult and the challenges are complex, but something needs to be done. Exploring how the welfare system was created, looking at its history and how it has developed since the 1940s and discovering expert perspectives on how its problems can be solved, is one of my major ambitions as a sociology student.
In addition to the opportunity to study a subject that interests me at far greater depth than at college, university will also help me expand my non-academic interests. I am a very keen dancer, having studied all forms of dance from the age of 6. As an active member of my local dance school I have taken part in many annual performances and during the last two years have helped behind the scenes with choreography, set design and fund raising. This all had an unexpected impact on my thinking about my sociology A-level work as I found myself working with people younger than myself from varying backgrounds, getting to know them and their families. Working with young people now features quite highly in my career ambitions and I am volunteering on a project this summer that involves the rehabilitation of young offenders through sport.
This is another big part of my life as I love running. I have completed a marathon and my ambition is to enter and compete in the London Marathon, which I hope to do in 2014. I find that running helps my general fitness, helping me to play tennis and squash better and I also find I think through academic and personal issues as I run. At university, I hope to combine my studies with both volunteering and an active sports life.