College life

“Don’t get stuck in something for the next two or three years that you really don’t enjoy”

Ryan Gravenor, aged 17

Studying: Music Production at The MET

Went to: Steyning Grammar School

Qualifications obtained at school: 9 GCSEs




“What I found really difficult when I was revising for my GCSEs was how to manage my time as I left it too late to start. Sometimes I felt like the world was against me. By the time Easter was over, everyone was stressing out.

But being at college is all-round less stressful than being at school. I don’t feel pressure not to make a mistake. They say make mistakes and learn from them and move on. 

People’s attitude to a course like mine are generally negative but that’s because they don’t really understand what it involves or where it can lead to. 

If you’re a friend or a parent of someone who is choosing to do something slightly different than most people at college, the last thing that person wants to hear is ‘you’re not going to be able to make a living out of it’ or ‘it’s not worth doing’. Demoralising them and making them do something else isn’t going to make them do any better. 

The main thing for me, as cheesy as it sounds, is follow exactly what you want to do, because there’s no point being stuck in something for the next two or three years that you really don’t enjoy. Don’t spend the next two years doing A-Levels if you’re not going to enjoy it. You might as well spend the next two years doing something you enjoy and you’ll get something out of.”


Ryan is sharing his story as part of The MET's #NoStressSuccess campaign on the YMCA e-wellbeing mental health support website for 12-25 year-olds.

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