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Are college students stuck in autopilot?


Carol Poss

Staff writer

Every day, students shuffle around campus from class to class, activity to activity. It is sad to say, but they are missing out on life. For the most part, college students are in their early 20s, with almost limitless options. It is hard to believe that students would let so many of these chances pass.

The culture of college students allows for so much opportunity. The problem is not all college students want that culture. Some students are so stuck in the rut of exams and assignments that they are missing the scenery on the road to a degree. Even students who pride themselves in getting the most of their education fall into this trap.

Junior English education major Anthony Dyches said that although he wants to be well rounded, it can be easy to become methodic in education.

“I have gone through the motions in many of my classes, but I always try to do my best in the classes I enjoy most,” said Dyches. “I particularly take interest in any class that engages me to think about my future teaching high school English.”

Dyches accredits much of his love for learning to the instructors.

“It helps to have instructors who are focused on more than just their content,” said Dyches. “For instance, I have had the great opportunity to take classes with professors who have been interested in uplifting their students both intellectually and spiritually.”

Professors uplifting their students can lead to personal development, which, according to UpMarket, an online marketing magazine, can combat stagnant mindsets. UpMarket says a solid personal development plan will equip you with the necessary tools to live your life to the fullest.

One of the keys to living life to the fullest is a healthy relationship with knowledge. The love of learning for learning’s sake is missing from the ideology of many college students. For Dr. Carmen Butcher, professor of English and scholar-in-residence, a desire for education was rooted in a heart for God.

“My desire for education is rooted in my desire to know my God,” said Dr. Butcher.

Christians have a responsibility to search for knowledge. The integration of faith and learning is the key to a well-rounded student. Dr. Butcher said that being a learner is about seeing the big picture.

“It is about a mission greater than me, part of a team,” said Dr. Butcher. “Education has to be love in action, because one wants it to be.”

Being ego-driven can be harmful for college students, as can obsessing over money, success or recognition. Dr. Butcher said that anything can become a god. It is the obsession that takes over and students lose sight of the opportunities they have been given.

The desire for an education has to start with the desire to be a life-long learner. Dr. Butcher said her students are her teachers.

“The outcome has to be love,” said Dr. Butcher. “We miss out when we forget the heart.”

Students are catching on. There are many students on the Hill learning with passion both in the classroom and out.

“I hope I never stop learning because learning is growing, and I would not want to become stagnant,” said Dyches.