Observations of An Older Student

You know how we always say, “if I only knew then what I know now?”  Well, I’m not gonna say that because that phrase gets played out sometimes.  However, with hindsight always being 20/20, it’s so interesting to look back and reflect on what you could have done differently.  I’ve been in school for one week now, and as I’ve touched on before, the contrast between how I think and engage is totally different from my peers.  I’m guessing that the majority of them are sophomore/juniorish, but their behavior and thought process is nothing less than sophomoric–no pun intended.  They are more concerned about how they are going to be graded on an assignment and what’s on the test instead of focusing on the material that if they did indeed study it, then they wouldn’t be concerned about getting a bad grade.  It’s funny–I was in my Human Communications class today, and the professor has a power point up to supplement her lecture.  But of course, the majority of the students have not read the chapter yet and were trying to copy them down word for word because this professor does not post her slides online–smart woman.  Now, mind you, we were assigned to read chapter one last Monday–seven days ago!  On top of that, this lady is very good at emphasizing what is on the test.  She’s also given us hints to her lecturing style for deciphering what is test material and what is not.  So, pretty much, even if you did not read the chapter you should still be able to take efficient notes from the way she teaches.  So, she’s trying to move on, but half of the class yells, “WAIT!”  I must admit…I used to be them!  I never read a chapter before we discussed it in class.  However, I’m actually doing that now, and OH-MY-GOD it makes such a difference!!  If you’ve already read and have taken notes, then the majority of your work is already done for you!!  You can actually sit back, and LISTEN to the lecture and think about what it means!  You know what I do now?  I listen, and then with a highlighter I mark the content that is important.  This way when it’s time for the test, I’m not stuck “studying” (cramming really) 80 pages of notes.  All I have to do is just take the few highlighted points and study those and I’ll be straight!  Who would have thought something as simple as reading before class would totally revolutionize my classroom experience?!  Yeah, yeah…I know all of you out there are smarties and knew about this already, but that is NOT my testimony (lol).

You know what else is cool about being in school at this point in my life?  Seeing as how I’m learning about stuff that I really really REALLY need and want to learn about, I’m finding myself looking for resources outside of the classroom that will help me.  For example, I’m trying to find creative ways to expand my vocabulary.  I’m also considering subscribing to a newspaper so I can have constant exposure to journalism.  I was also looking for some sort of online grammar tutorials that I can do, but last night I discovered that one of my textbooks (which was optional but I bought it anyway because I knew it would help :-)) has a website with that feature already built in!    As I mentioned months ago, I don’t just want to be in school to sit through some classes to say I did the work and skate by just to get another degree.  I want to do exceptionally well!  Not just to make good grades, but because I really want to understand and know this material like the back of my hand.  If I just slink in and out of classes just focused on passing (like my peers), then I would be shortchanging myself and doing others a disservice as well.  See, THAT’S why it’s soo important to know what your purpose and life’s contribution is!  When you realize that this life is not about you…when you recognize that there are people attached to you that you haven’t even met yet…when you realize that your success or failure will enhance or jeopardize someone else’s life, THEN the game is changed and you become driven.  You MUST do your best!  You MUST go the extra mile!  You MUST come out on top!  Why?  Everything you do impact’s someone else.  Isn’t that powerful?
So, for all you college students out there…who cares who’s looking at you!  Who cares who wants to date you!  Who cares what people are saying about you!  Who cares what you wear and how much it cost!  Who cares what you drive and how much money your parents give you!  Who cares about all that sophomoric hub bub?!  Go to class and actually get the education that someone is paying for!  Learn the material and be well versed in it!  So what if you think you’ll never use it again!  People’s lives are at stake…and it’s not just your own, so give it your all.  Go and “get yours” …for someone else 🙂

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