Why we should apply the UCAS logic to Brexit
PUBLISHED: 10:28 31 August 2018 | UPDATED: 13:30 31 August 2018
One reader makes a comparison of a People's Vote to the UCAS process for applying to university.
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My daughter has recently turned 18 and didn’t get a vote in the referendum but, like many young people of her age, she has been making some important choices that will affect the rest of her life – should she go to university, if so, which one, and what to study.
The university application process started a little over two years ago in June 2016, just after she had completed her GCSEs. It has involved many visits to universities on open days as she has found out more about what she wants to do and where. Finally she submitted her UCAS form, accompanied with a detailed personal statement.
In due course she received some offers and had to make her choices for a ‘firm’ and ‘insurance’ offer – then it was all down to the exams, and a lot of hard work for her and nervousness for her parents.
Finally, she got her results and, thankfully, had achieved her offer. But this isn’t the final step, she then has to confirm she still wants the place and, if she had changed her mind, could choose not to accept the place. To me, this seems like an entirely rational process. She goes through a process involving investigation and negotiation, but nothing is finally settled until the end of the process.
In these circumstances, I find it difficult to explain to her, why the rest of her life will be significantly affected by a referendum result in June 2016 when the terms of the ‘deal’ were not known, but once the ‘deal’ has been finalised there is to be no opportunity to ‘confirm’ the earlier decision – it makes no sense at all.
I have just come back from my Erasmus year abroad at the beautiful Spanish city of Santiago de Compostela where I studied at the university where my grandfather started his degree more than half a century ago. I also improved my Spanish, had a great time living in another country with people from all over the planet and did a lot of travelling (especially for football).
None of this would have been possible without the Erasmus scheme, which is something which simply must be preserved in its current form, regardless of Brexit.
Nothing seems to have changed since I have been away: The cabinet still don’t have an agreed vision of Brexit, the opposition aren’t much better, while the Brexiteers are slowly, but surely, trying to remove themselves from all responsibility of the negative consequences of Brexit.
I may have learnt many things over the last academic year, but it seems that Theresa May and co have not.
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