DURING the student riots of 2010, we students acquired a terrible name for ourselves.
We were described as anarchists and troublemakers by the tabloids, and even now we constantly get labelled as drunks who cause fights and damage on nights out.
The majority of students, myself included, hold down a part-time job whilst studying full-time at university.
And that’s not to mention offering ourselves up for the unpaid work experience that seems to be de rigueur for any student wanting to get a foothold in the jobs market these days and trying to balance a family and social life on top of that.
At what point did I become the media stereotype who gives my university town a bad name?
There are over 400,000 new undergraduate places in the UK every year.
Add in those already studying in their second and third year and you have more than a million students all together.
With nearly three-quarters of those maintaining jobs alongside their degrees just to keep their heads above water, that means there’s more than 800,000 of us performing a difficult balancing act.
Yes, students are often loud, poorly dressed and a bit scruffy, but surely these qualities don’t outweigh the fact we’re trying to make something of our lives and contribute to society when we graduate?
We want a degree that will help us get somewhere in life, and that knock on effect will have an impact on their community.
I’m sure one day I’ll grow up to think students are irritating, but I hope I’ll just be thankful they’re there at all.