Meet our Clearing Champions

These students have been through the Clearing race and crossed the finish line. Find out how they got their running start.

Amy's Clearing Story

Amy is currently completing the last placement of her final year studying Nursing (Adult) at Edinburgh Napier University. She applied through Clearing as a mature student.

Brandon's Clearing Story

Brandon has just reached the end of his first year studying Business Information Technology at Edinburgh Napier University. He applied through Clearing as a school-leaver.


Third Year, Bachelor of Nursing (Adult)

Amy, Nursing (Adult) Student

Why did you apply through Clearing?

I originally completed another degree before I started to consider Nursing. By the time I was graduating, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do next.

Nursing was something I had always been interested in and a conversation with my mum basically just gave me the confidence to go for it. However, since this was around August, the original intake for the course had already finished.

I knew Clearing existed so I thought I would chance my luck and apply that way.

How did you find the experience?

When I phoned Edinburgh Napier University, I was immediately put through to the Admissions team. We discussed what my background was, what I’d been doing and what kind of qualifications I had. 

After I filled out my UCAS form and sent it over, everything was okay apart from my biology qualifications. The person I spoke to actually recommended an online course that helped me get up to speed and meet the requirements. They set it all up for me, which made everything easier.

My experience going through Clearing was really positive. Everyone was so helpful and made it really straightforward. They talked me through the application process, using UCAS and made it clear what would be expected from me.

Has returning to university made a difference to your life?

If I hadn’t applied through Clearing, I would probably still be in a job that I didn’t want as a career.

By returning to university, I’ve now found a career that I want to do and that I enjoy doing. I’m currently looking into full-time nursing positions so, hopefully, I’ll have a job lined up when I graduate at the end of my placement.

I have Clearing to thank for that because I wouldn’t have gotten in any other way.

Would you recommend Clearing to other mature learners?

No matter how old you are, if you haven’t been in education for a long time, don’t let that put you off. Clearing can get you to where you want to be in life.

You can come back to higher education, it’s a really good process. The Admissions team are always there to answer your questions. They’re just at the end of an email or the phone, even if you think it’s a daft question.

Research what Clearing is and don’t give up. You’re still in the race!


First Year, Business Information Technology BSc

Brandon, Business Information Technology Student

Why did you apply through Clearing?

During my fifth and sixth year of high school, I did an HNC course alongside my Highers which should have really boosted my university applications. Unfortunately, some administrative problems meant, even though I passed, I didn’t get my award on time.

That led to my university applications being rejected because, by results day, I didn’t have any proof of my qualification. I called the summer school I had attended and they gave me a list of universities to contact for Clearing.

How did you find the experience?

It was a bit hectic to start with! I was panicking and calling different universities to try and find a place.

For most of it, I just felt like I was being shuffled along through a queue. I was just being spoken to by people who had a script to read and talk me through the process.

When I called Edinburgh Napier University, though, I actually got the chance to talk to the head of the department I was applying to. That just immediately brought the level up. It was a much more personalised experience and made me feel so much better about what I was doing.

Do you think applying through Clearing made a difference?

I’m actually really glad I went through Clearing because it changed my plans completely.

Originally, I had applied to study Computer Science. I love computers and was sure that was what I wanted to do, even though I was less interested in the coding aspect of the course.

That person I spoke to on the day was able to recommend Business Information Technology instead, which is much less coding-focused and has suited me so much better.

What advice would you give yourself now, looking back?

I think the first morning it kind of hit me: “I’ve been declined, this is it, it’s the end of everything!”

And it’s not. If I could give any bit of advice before starting the whole process, it would be to just calm down a little. Clearing is there to give you another shot at getting onto a course.

If you’ve had an application declined, or if you’ve had circumstances set that you’re not sure you can achieve, phone up and have a talk. You are still in the race.