‘More people have applied to Love Island, than they have Oxford and Cambridge.’
How does the number of people applying to Love Island triumph the amount applying for Oxford and Cambridge? Is this a new ‘British society’? What does this tell us about our generation?
This fact has had many people questioning how us “young people” think. Some say this fact only indicates that our traditional careers, such as doctors and lawyers, are not what young people are after these days; we are looking for broader opportunities. Others say it is evidence that our population has become poisoned with fame and beauty, linked with the toxicity that is reality television.
Firstly, I think we need to consider the application process. With Oxford and Cambridge, your entry requirements are an average of A – A*s at A – Level, which many of us will say is the harder option, while the application for Love Island is a tad bit easier. You send in a brief video of yourself outlining ‘why you would be the best islander’, take a headshot, full-length photo and three optional selfies. Simple.
University is becoming increasingly costly, leaving prospective students to either raise money themselves or look towards an alternate future. This new ‘British society’ is not being held back, but we are moving forward with more consideration for other careers. For instance Instagram influencers, can have a sustainable career, with no need for qualifications and provide a good living. No wonder people are opting to apply to Love Island.
Being a contestant on one of these popular shows can open doors that a university experience simply cannot, such as sponsorship deals, talk shows and many more. Although, some argue more young people applied to Love Island because they are more accepting of ethnic minorities from state schools, than the top universities do. I think that if these top universities want more applications, then they need to widen the net, attract more people from different backgrounds and offer more opportunities for those who do not want to go to University, such as degree apprenticeships.
Let’s be honest. At the end of this Love Island series, the winning couple walks away with an extra £50,000 in the bank, while University leads to a debt easily surplus of £50k. However, with university you walk away with a knowledge that you can not get from a problematic reality tv series, which many could argue is more valuable.
At the end of the day, I hope the UK has more insight into this new generation and can consider the faults in the education system that has more people hoping to get on Love Island, than they have hope in qualifying for a top university like Oxford and Cambridge.