Back to School, Back to School

back to school…back to school…to prove to dad i’m not a fool…got my bag packed up..my shoes tied tight…i hope i don’t get in a fight…oooh back to school…back to school…

Freshman year. Gosh, can't imagine why I wasn't more popular?

I am officially enrolled in my first class at UNCG! I’ll be starting Contemporary Asian Literature in August. I wasn’t too terribly excited about taking Asian Lit. as my first “getting back into college” course but after receiving the four novels I’ll be reading, I am pumped! As strange as it is, I miss school. Writing papers, studying, class discussions (even though mine will now be virtual), everything!

It got me to thinking, why couldn’t I have been like this in high school?! Studying, book reports, and classwork were the furthest thing from my mind along with 90% of the student body. We were focused on clothes, parties, members of the opposite sex, and which barely edible food would be served in the cafeteria that day.

It’s funny viewing school and studies from an adult’s point of view. If I had kids right now, I know I would preach to them the importance of school the same way I was preached to as a teen. The same type of speech that triggers a glazed over look and an exaggerated rolling of the eyes.

So is school appreciation something that can only come with age and maturity? My experiences in the work world have contributed to my desire to finish my degree, maybe that is the driving force behind a lot of adults. Sometimes I feel like a robot: wake up, go to work, come home, sleep, rinse and repeat. The idea of learning new concepts, ideas, and broadening my knowledge and perspective is exciting. It will be nice to have something to break up the monotony and stimulate my brain!

I guess it comes down to this: you can’t force teenagers to appreciate or take advantage of the knowledge they are inheriting from their teachers. It is impossible to force a high-schooler to become suddenly enthusiastic about learning, and some people may never enjoy school as long as they live, and that’s ok. More importantly, I think it is necessary to develop a permanent sense of curiosity and desire to learn as you get older.

Even though I disliked school as a teen, I am grateful for my parents instilling a strong work ethic in me. I remember sitting for hours at the dining room table being forced to struggle through math problems, and hating every second of it. Without those late night study sessions, I don’t think I would appreciate school the way I do now. Waitressing for several years and experiencing $2.50/hour salary also helps in the urge to get back into school. I know for some kids a break from college inevitably means dropping out, but not for this girl! Finishing my degree by taking 1 or 2 classes online at a time is going to take awhile, but I am welcoming the challenge with open arms and a fully charged calculator (snort snort).

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