Hi all, This is, for me at least, a devastating story, but I might try to re-build my life in my early thirties and possibly go back to physics after more than 12 years out. I got into one of England's best--and indeed, world's best--universities to study physics way back in the halcyon days of 1999. I never really wanted to go to England, but it was by far the best school I secured a place at; the peers who I admired from high school got in to Ivy league schools and the like and I didn't want to be in the US if not at an equal university. My first year was great: like the other English universities, it's meant to be a filter year, and I did really well, especially on the mechanics course and Math methods (they're fairly specialised at an early stage over there). That was pretty consistent with high school. Then came my second year. This was a perfect storm. A combination of what I could only describe as ridiculous family bulling--I ended up living with a semi-alcoholic relative, not being able to afford a place of my own--and my own loss of stamina, not to mention interest in "extra-curricular" activities (drinking, etc) meant that I barely scraped through with passing these courses. This quickly snowballed into the third year; I was severely, unbelievably depressed and in the end, I barely got a degree after three years. So I was 20 years old with a fairly useless BSc in Physics, albeit from a spankingly good school. The trouble is, it took me a while to figure out just how useless my degree was. Basically, I was a fairly cocky kid and I managed to talk myself into all sorts of jobs, sometimes jobs I had the flimsiest qualifications for. I'm not saying I didn't have fun: I actually did some amazing jobs that other people would have counted themselves lucky to have. Over time, I also got a graduate certificate in Analytical Chemistry from night school. Although it was something I did almost casually, this was important--I managed to get on to a master's degree programme in applied physics. It was kind of a research methods course, and it gave me the chance to do a project with some funky imaging applications. The main reason I did a master's in physics was to convince myself that I could, and that my underperformance during the BSc days was out of my own volition. This kind of backfired. Since completing a master's six years ago, I can't stop thinking back to how much I would have loved to work that hard during my undergraduate days. It goes without saying that in the intervening 12 years, I have actually learned what it means to have a work ethic. Today, and for the past year in particular, I have this nagging feeling that I wake up with every morning. I keep wondering how I allowed myself to mess up so bad, when I could have dug my heels in and transferred to another school or switched majors, or whatever. Hindsight is, of course, 20/20. What I'm considering doing at the moment is going straight back to get a whole new undergraduate degree. I should probably be able to start this in the Fall, with some courses taken during the evening at my local university. I would love to be able to take those courses and transfer them, possibly with the help of GREs or something, to a better ranking university, and from there continue with a whole new BSc. I have a couple of questions here: If I manage to get a BSc in physics in my mid-30s, how likely is it that a graduate school would look at an application from me? I've been trying to find places that allow students to study for a second baccalaureate degree. They seem few and far between, but any suggestions are more than welcome. For those of you who are academics in physics departments: what else can I do at this stage to make things better?