By Roger Wilson, a Construction Management NTU Alumni
I was in my first year of a four year Construction Management degree at Trent and I had just found out that my friend was really struggling and made it clear that he was going back home to his parents. He couldn’t cope with the workload and felt that he just wasn’t clever enough. He was really down and embarrassed to admit it.
By this stage, a bunch of us had formed a really strong bond. Rock City, house parties, football, rugby; we would laugh together so hard that it hurt. We were doing everything together. At 19, Nottingham was the best place to be……but then my friend dropped this bombshell. “I’m going home lads – I can’t do this any more – my Dad’s coming on Friday and I’m going home”.
At first he wasn’t going to tell us.
No chance we were letting this happen. We sat down and talked to him. He was told that whatever it was, we were going to do our best to make sure he knew that we were there to help him and get him through it. We weren’t saying goodbye to him. We worked for the rest of the term in groups making sure we helped him. Looking back, we also helped each other. We supported each other as we focused on our friend.
Four years later he graduated with a 2:1 and today he is the Managing Director of a large national organisation. We all still see each other two or three times through the year and when we do, it’s just as if we are back in Nottingham together. Every now and then it gets mentioned. We all know that it has made our friendship stronger, and to think that he didn’t want to tell us at first – he thought that he was being weak!
Why am I telling you this? Because University life can be hard and can present problems you weren’t expecting. You are far away from home. Don’t underestimate the power of friends – they will be there forever…and probably, even longer.
This post is part of our regular NTU Alumni feature. Over the next few weeks we will be posting guest blogs written by our Alumni Fellows sharing their experiences and tips on their student journey while here at NTU.
If you are an NTU graduate and are interested in writing for us contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can find more information about our Alumni Fellowship volunteering programme via the alumni website