When disaster spells the start of something new

"Three years ago I was planning on coming to university like everyone else but I had a disaster with my A Levels and I didn't get any of my places."

Sariah Barnhill, BA (Hons) Modern and International History

Despite a "disastrous" A Levels results day Clearing student Sariah has graduated with first class honours and her dream job internship.

"Three years ago I was planning on coming to university like everyone else but I had a disaster with my A Levels and I didn't get any of my places." explained Sariah Barnhill, 22 from Weston-on-the-Green, North Oxfordshire.

After calling Staffordshire University's Clearing hotline she spoke with lecturer Dr Pauline Ellkes and secured a place on the BA (Hons) Modern and International History course.

She said: “We had a conversation about my application and Pauline gave me a place within 20 minutes. I was just thrilled - me and my mum had a little party!”

Sariah has been a model student throughout her studies and has won a national competition to complete a three-month internship with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission this summer.

Sarah is one of only 24 out of 300 applicants chosen to travel to Menin Gate cemetery in Ypres and the Thiepval Memorial on the Somme to gives tours, work in the archives and help visitors with family research.

“It's my dream job, I wish it was more than three months long! Hopefully it might lead onto something else with them because it's an amazing organisation to work for.”

After graduating with a first class honours degree Sariah hopes to study for a Masters and pursue a career in military heritage.

She urges other students who find themselves in a similar situation on A Level results day to stay calm and explore their options.

“Check you inbox because a lot of unis send you emails and Staffs was the first on my list. Take a deep breath, it's not the end of the world. You'll find somewhere!"

From 17 August, prospective students can contact Staffordshire University for an offer on Snapchat, Facebook or Twitter. Until then, our Clearing Ambassadors will be manning social media platforms, offering live Q and As. Visitors to our dedicated Clearing webpages can find further help and advice and experience virtual tours of the University campus.

Find out more at http://www.staffs.ac.uk/clearing/ or call our Clearing hotline on 0800 590 830.

Contact

Amy Platts
Multimedia Press Officer
Marketing and Public Relations
L600, Flaxman Building
College Road
Stoke-on-Trent
ST4 2DE
t: +44(0) 1782 292702
m: 07799341911
e: amy.platts@staffs.ac.uk