I'd never taken much of a real interest in politics - up until the point I began to comprehend its significance.
Part of me can understand why someone might want to leave the EU. We're a country that's seemingly become a bit too big for its boots and decided that it's strong enough to manage independently. It's easy to feel as much; we were one of the nations to pioneer a health service free at the point of use, still of tremendous importance to our nation today.
Perhaps Switzerland is the biggest inspiration - a country without EU membership yet of free-trade agreement, as of 1992. It is a country which invites Britain to follow in its footsteps; having recently withdrawn its application to join the EU, after a remarkably similar referendum.
Yet it is clearly a nation fragile. Recent events - such as the tragic and cruel murder of MP Jo Cox - has truly proved this to be the case.
To most, immigration seems to be the most major factor which contributes most in swaying us towards either side of the argument. The European Union allows for a border open to all EU citizens; so it ought to be considered that this is a two-way system. According to the UN, approximately 1.2 million Britons are living and working within alternative EU nations; and hence what is advocated is the beneficial aspect to this agreement, on our part.
Of course, on the other hand, there are immigrants that enter and remain in our country unemployed - yet the vast majority are contributing towards our society. In truth, its difficult to know whether our country would survive without the essential workforce - doctors, firefighters, teachers and so many others - that derives from elsewhere within Europe.
How is leaving the EU set to affect the educational sector? Many students choose to study within other EU countries to enrich both their global experience and knowledge within their course - and I, myself, am a prospective student that wishes to do the same. Almost undoubtedly, following June 23rd - if we were to leave, it wouldn't be impossible to still fulfil this; for many students choose to study in areas outside of the EU. Yet, surely it's set to me more difficult to acquire and afford the same placements.
I also feel as if the economic impact of the EU is typically misunderstood to a considerable extent. Quite a lot of money does go out to the EU each year - though this is still only 7% of what is annually invested in the NHS, after removing the sums returned back to the UK in grants. In addition to this, the free trade that the EU provides is of tremendous value; particularly in light of the fact that around 50% of Britain's trade is with other EU countries. As much as Vote Leave supporters might argue this a possibility, it might be harder than anticipated to effectuate such valuable links having left the EU.
Aged just 16, I don't have the right to vote within this referendum; something I see as unjust, considering that it is my age group that is probable to be most affected by its outcome, in upcoming years. Still, I feel I hold an opinion mutual amongst many others - or at least, whether or not this is the case will be evident in just a week's time.
I'd love to hear your opinion - regardless of whether or not it conforms to my own. What do you anticipate the outcome of this referendum to be? Do let me know.