Monday, April 6, 2009

You got class!

When the spring semester comes to an end, students know it is the time of the year that they all dread during their studies: the final exams. The long, important, defining final exams… "Watch out for INTENSE STRESS AHEAD!" It is in those crucial last weeks that, besides the usual like the last lectures and seminars, reports and group work; everyone at university will fasten the pace by bringing their sleeping bags to the library and get drunk on caffeine: CLASSIC behavior! Bless them!
But, if it is any consolation and consider it also a reward, although I am one of those who fear exams like scary kittens fear big dogs, I will name EDUCATION as a NUMBER ONE PRIORITY in life, and this for two specific reasons!
First of all, education is -- scratch that: has always been and will forever be -- the BEST asset, gift and weapon we can ever possess. We can do anything and go anywhere with our degree in hand. The future lies in our hands. The young and the forever young are the fruits of this society and it is our job to make it better, to want more ... and as simple as it sounds, we only need to work very hard for it! Unfortunately, education is still unaccessible to many: not all students get the support they require and deserve. In addition, it has quite many flaws in its system. For one, it is horrible that the cost of education gets higher every year. This is not about money! And if it were, why is it so difficult to grasp that it is best for the government to put more funds in education -- and not pinning it on parents or working students? Furthermore, as the world evolves, the society we live in becomes more and more competitive. Going to university matters, but reality shows that its name and reputation count a little more. Having a bachelor degree matters, but a masters or a doctorate degree counts a little more. Preparing for the professional world appears to be quite frightening because companies no longer look at good or even great, they look at the very best, especially in times of (financial) crisis. Sadly, it is a scary ride and the safety net may not come along, but the only thing we can do is jump: hope and prepare for a better future.
Secondly, despite the bitterness I have for this stressful part of studying i.e. preparing for exams, education is still the most beautiful thing that exists because I simply love to study and live the University life! We are from different walks of life but we are here for the same thing: get new skills or improve them. Most importantly, one is never too old to learnLearning gives us wings: there is just so much to explore, so many things in our -- or even other interesting -- fields to cherish. Knowledge frees our mind, opens our heart, teaches us criticism, brings us independence, calls for responsibility and forges our person.
STUDYING is LIBERTY! Freedom of the soul!
And I am assured that studying and working hard always pay up! We may be doubtful about our course. It is hard. We may not understand at first, or even block fully at some point! But we can ALWAYS make it, which ever route we take and even how long we'll need to get to the finishing line! In addition, this is the time of our life: we should feed our spirit with as much as possible... especially with what we adore to do because it is now that we get to learn a whole lot in such a short span of time! Be hungry! Put effort in it! Look up! Aim higher!  We should be who we are meant to become! And evidently, we shouldn't forget that education brings us so many other, very attractive privileges along the way such as the the typical, very cheap coffee breaks, excellent encounters, crazy parties and holidays are only this long at this stage of our life. The truth is, I am a terrible student - has a habit of being too close to deadlines, (somehow) always late for classes, loves wednesday's outings a little too much, plays su-do-ku during lectures - but I guess we all find our own way through it because...
One thing only matters: go to class, every bit of the journey is worthwhile.