What I wish I'd known about life after VCE

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Strap yourself in for one sweet ride, Year 12s. It’s time to get your driver’s license, hit the accelerator and cruise down the long road of freedom towards a life without school bells, teachers or rules. Soon enough, you’ll be setting your own rules so you can kill it in the real world. Want some tips to tackle what comes next? We’ll hook you up with advice from those in the know.

Explore different paths in life
It’s never too late to take a new path. I started out as a hairdresser and as my life changed so did my aspirations. After I had kids I studied accounting part time. Now I run my own business.
– Shannon Cook, business owner

Faking it is okay
The ‘grown up world’ is a big hoax and everyone is just winging it. It’s just that people get better at pretending to know what they are doing.
– Joel Utter, advertising creative

There’s life after results
It’s seriously not the end of the world if you get an ATAR that’s different to the one you expected. It’ll definitely seem like that at first, but you may well find yourself down a more exciting, fulfilling path that you didn’t know existed. Or you might find your way back to your original plan via a different pathway.
– Natalia Ng, university student

You can make money doing what you love
Nobody told me you could actually make a career out of your passions. I wish more of us were told that our dreams aren’t pie in the sky.
– Stephen Russell, freelance journalist

'Nobody told me you could actually make a career out of your passions. I wish more of us were told that our dreams aren’t pie in the sky.'

Stephen Russell,
freelance journalist

Take some chances
Uni is the best place to figure out who you are and what you want to achieve in life. There are so many opportunities available, you just have to be proactive and take chances – you never know where you will end up! It’s such a big, exhilarating learning curve.
– Akshara Vivekananthan, university student

Don’t be afraid to ask for help 
When you start uni you need to be willing to ask for the help that you need. You have mentors and study skills helpers at your disposal. If you are struggling, you should definitely seek their wisdom.
– Emily Camilleri, university student

School will become a distant memory
You really start to shape your own world and make your own choices when you leave high school. So much will happen so quickly that Year 12 will seem like a distant memory.
– Kate Jackson, project manager