Arriving as a Mature Student

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I joined the NYP physiotherapy school in 2013 and I am currently waiting for the start of my second year. As time sped by, like every other student, I struggle to keep up with assignments and projects, and believe me, this physiotherapy course is not that easy.

When I first came to NYP, I thought that I would stand out with a beacon on my head, labeled ‘old person’. I felt awkward and out of place. I asked myself, “What am I doing here?” My saving grace had been the other mature students who encouraged and help me believe that I do belong and have incredible value as a physiotherapy student. With only a small handful of mature students, interactions with the younger students are bound to happen.

Unfortunately, the gap between the younger students and I exists. However, it can be bridged. All it takes is time and a little more enthusiasm. As it happens, the younger students enjoy my company and I enjoy theirs. With their bountiful energy, they provide me with much-needed entertainment while I offer gleams of experience. Our friendships are based on mutual respect and understanding, because fundamentally, we are all in the same boat regardless of our backgrounds. So, making friends with both the young and mature students have been the heart of my success so far.

I admit that one does lose certain things with age. While the young remembers things like a sponge, mine is not as quick to absorb and learn any more. I recall leaving my first lecture thinking, “I did not understand what the lecturer said at all!” School is a game of catching up, as the pace of learning is faster than what I can cope with. I need time to go through everything. Thankfully, the younger students are here to help me along. Going through this physiotherapy course needs a lot of determination as the ‘I-just-can’t-get-it’ moments make it so frustrating and my spirit wanes.

Studying physiotherapy could be the toughest thing yet but I am prepared for the challenges ahead!

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