Grades – do they really matter? I guess that depends on a lot of things, and I’m about to tell you why.
Exam results are talk of the town here in Malta at the moment as all the students across the island are finding out whether they’ve passed onto sixth form, university, the next year in their course, or graduation. While it’s a super nerve-racking time for everyone, it’s safe to say that the outcome is drastically different for different individuals too.
To name a few;
There are A-students who got amazing grades as usual.
There are high-grade students who, for some reason, just didn’t get it right this time.
There are middle-grade students who got their average marks.
And there are lower-grade students who have tried over and over again and either failed again, or finally made it.
I have so many words to say on this topic. I, being one of the people from the last of that list, who tried so hard but never got good grades. I was just never an academic person; always either failing or scraping through my exams. Throughout my scholastic life, I considered myself a failure, but I realised that I had my own path cut out for me and good grades were never necessarily going to be a part of it.
5 years ago, I posted this on Facebook:
Side note: I don’t want anyone who’s been happily posting their successful results to think that I disapprove of their happiness – on the contrary, I salute and congratulate you from the bottom of my heart. But that same heart goes out to everyone who just can’t seem to get it right. This isn’t the end! Keep fighting for what you want and one day you’ll get there. 🙂
Since I posted that, I meanwhile went on to study theatre in the UK with a partial scholarship but returned to Malta because I was unwell and unhappy. I also took up 2 part-time courses for fun and kicked ass in them. On top of that, I’ve worked my way up to a great position which I love and take a lot of pride in.
Apart from having an awesome full-time job, I also have a house that’s partly under my name, and will be married in less than a year. These were my life goals, and I’m slowly reaching them. I worked hard to get to where I am now, and I know I’ll go further. But I didn’t get here because of good grades.
What I mean is, not everything in life needs to be determined by a piece of paper. Don’t get me wrong – there are certain careers which require particular qualifications. If you genuinely want to be a doctor, lawyer, engineer, etc… you know you need good grades. But I know so many people who go to University because they think that’s what they’re supposed to do, or because it’s expected of them, or because they’re trying to carry on a family legacy.
All I say is, as cheesy as it may sound: Follow your dreams, pursue your passions, do what truly makes you happy, and yes, work your ass off.
There’s much more I could say, but I’ll stop there for now. Meanwhile, I’d like to wish all students the absolute best of luck, happiness, and success in life. May you always be greatly inspired and achieve your goals with pride.
Until next time,
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Another post! Short and sweet with a lot of meaning.
I truly get what you are saying! I find sometimes to hard to focus when I see that I have failed yet another exam, but I dust myself off (after I cry a bit about it) and just TRY AGAIN. Life is all about learning from your mistakes, so when it comes to exams you just learn from your mistakes. And as you said, it’s not all about grades. I have truly learn this from being for a year in Sweden, where they truly push (even at University) this idea. We didn’t have the grading system of A,B,C but a Fail, Good and Very Good. A simple yet effective grading, where you feel like you can help your peers because if he gets a Good and so do you, then we are on the same level. Most of the time, the people who got the Very Good where those who did the optional part of the task at hand. It’s all about a different way of thinking, more positive.
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Thanks for sharing this lovely, it’s so great to know! We definitely need a more positive outlook on the whole idea of grading, not to mention the desperately needed upgrade in our educational system here in MT! Glad Sweden has worked out so well for you 🙂 x