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Katy Ross

On the day she received her A-level results, Katy Ross from Acomb, York had a change of heart about her university plans.

The 20-year-old had originally applied to a number of universities to study speech and language therapy, and secured the grades she’d needed to take her first choice place. But now she had her results, she realised she wanted to do something different. 


Katy's Story

Katy had visited the campus at Northumbria University before she got her grades, and loved the city of Newcastle and its student-friendly atmosphere. Armed with advice from the UCAS website, and with no idea about what she wanted to study, she called the Clearing hotline at Northumbria.

Katy says: “I had no idea about Clearing, school didn’t ever tell us about how useful it was. I was really nervous but the team on the phone were fantastic. I knew I wanted to come to Northumbria but I hadn’t researched alternative courses. I was effectively starting from scratch but the team patiently talked me through my options.

“They asked lots of questions about me and my interests, then suggested that a BSc in Criminology and Sociology would be an ideal fit. I even got the chance to speak to the course leader who took the time to answer all of my questions. It was all so reassuring that I didn’t bother calling anywhere else and accepted my Northumbria place the same day.”

Katy says she doesn’t regret her change of heart one bit – in fact, she thinks it’s the best thing she ever did. She loves the independence of living as a student in Newcastle while being just an hour away from family and friends in York. She’s also on track for a great future with a wide range of career or further study options to choose from when she graduates next year.

She added: “I have to say that my university u-turn on A-level day was the best thing that could have happened. I’m amazed at how accurate the Northumbria clearing team were when they said I’d love the programme. My tutors are so interested in their subject and that makes studying so enjoyable. Even the more difficult aspects are brought to life by their enthusiasm.

“The BSc Criminology and Sociology programme is such a good starting point for so many different careers and I’m already thinking about my next steps as there are so many routes I could choose, from policing to social work. I’m keen on going into the probation service to work with young offenders, and my studies will be a brilliant foundation for that.

“My advice is never be afraid to change your mind! Even when it’s as late as A-level results day. There are still so many options open to you. If you’re going through Clearing, I’d recommend calling Northumbria first, it’s the best thing I ever did.”

Northumbria University has a limited number of places available for high quality students through Clearing this summer. For more information, visit or call the Clearing Hotline on 0800 085 1085

Return to Clearing & Confirmation home page

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