College, St. Lawrence, the basic concept, is odd when you think about it.
Think about it. When we turn a certain age, once we’ve achieved a certain level of accomplishment, our parents send us off to a communal living situation where our seniors teach us the information they think we should know during our lifetime. They pack us in together, within the confines of a few acres, where we have everything we need and want to live. We sit, everyday, lined up in rows staring blankly at our mentors as they transfer their knowledge into our brains. And dining halls? Weird!
Not to suggest that it is, but college can be very cult-like. I think it’s fair to say that cults are often times negligent of the outside world. Sometimes truth, commonsense, rationality, and consequence have a way of slipping through the cracks here in the collegiate realm. As we wend our ways through a lifestyle of repetition, it’s very easy to get caught up in a humdrum of nothingness. Days and nights littered with work, friends, and the same sidewalks bleed into one another; the more time we spend in this whirlwind, the more our lives revolve around what happens on this tiny campus. But this, of course, defeats the purpose of college!
What a depressing outlook! Wrap your brains around this! Contrary to the first paragraph let me depict a different scenario of academia. For eighteen or so years, our parents and communities prepare us for four years of intense training, where a field of experts will tell us everything they know. Even cooler… we spend four years training for a secret mission. We learn everything we can and then infiltrate the public sector where we create results; we use our super-knowledge to make this a better place to live. My version of this scenario also includes a lot of blue lighting, passwords, and someone with a headset walkie-talkie on. And, there’s a phone in the corner that connects straight to the president.
One version is cynical, the other is slightly exaggerated. Compromise, meld the two together to make a truly effective and enjoyable college experience that will benefit both ourselves and others. Hey, listen. When we hear about dogs that are locked in their house all day we feel bad for them. Right? So how can we get mad at them for pooping on the duvet? But if that dog had a human brain, hands, feet, and the capacity for sensibility, then that dog should be punished.