The face of education has fundamentally changed over the last decades. It is time we stop insisting that everyone has to go to university.

For three years, I was enlisted at a university in Brussels. So, for three years I was struggling with my mental health and my disappointing grades, and I know that I'm not the only one with this experience.

During exam periods my friends and I would send each other messages joking about our struggle to find the strength to pick up your syllabus and class notes and finally study. I got the impression we had kind of forgotten why we'd enrolled in the first place.

Of course universities aren't set up for a majority to thrive with their big auditoriums, 100+ pages of class notes to study for exams and so much more. You need a friends group to make it through. But for us Luxembourgers going to university means being alone in a big city, having to learn how to live alone for the first time and having also to make new friends.

So, the environment is particularly hostile to naturally shy and introverted people, who never really had to ask for help to get through high school.

After my first year of disappointing results, I tried switching degrees and, for a while, things improved. But when distance-learning became the norm due to the Covid pandemic, when we didn't know how long they would have to keep these measures in place, things came tumbling down again.

I was at a crossroads. I could either continue down the path I'd always envisioned for myself or choose something else entirely: look for another course I could do, maybe something a bit closer to home and deal with the fact that maybe university is not for everyone. But finding an alternative was easier said than done.

Eventually, in the autumn of 2021, I signed up for a BTS course focused on media and communication here in Luxembourg and it has been one of the best decisions of my life. For those who don't know, BTS is not only a K-Pop Band but also the abbreviation for "Brevet de Technicien Supérieur".

To explain it briefly, it's a two-year course where you take university-level classes and get around 120 ECTS, which is about as many as you'd get after two years of university. But it focuses much more on getting practical experience in a chosen field and the number of students is much smaller. And most importantly, you get the opportunity to do two internships as part of your own course.

The Ministry of Education has at its disposal these immensely hands-on courses, which make it so much easier for young high-school graduates to get a job in their field, as they already build relationships and connections in the industry while still studying. Unfortunately, the government does very little to promote these courses.

In these times of recession, I, for one, am very grateful I found out about them, and I can only recommend doing a BTS course if there is one in your field of interest. They will open so many doors for you.

Learn about my course here, and the BTS programme in general.