Learning for Self-Improvement, Not for the Job

I’m not sure if I’m the only one with this thought, but it sure seems like it. Listening to the various conversations I hear around campus, I can’t help but ask myself, what is everyone here for? Not “here” in the philosophical sense of why are we on the planet but “here” as in, why are people going to college. Is it because their parents are making them? Is it to get a better job? Is it just something to do? While all of these reasons hold water and everyone has their own right to do what they want in their own way, I feel like some people are missing out on the true beauty of learning. Ever since I was a kid, I have enjoyed learning and exploring new ideas. Personally, I didn’t go to college right out of high school. I was in a rebellious time in my life with a very anti-establishment view of the world . The last thing I wanted out of life was to subject myself to another system, one that dictates how and why you should live. I travelled and saw some really cool parts of the world in the two years before I went to college. I ate, drank and met many new people who I now call my close friends. But something was missing. Something greater than just each passing moment of freedom.

This void was filled when I learned of Anthropology and decided that I wanted to get back in the game. I didn’t realize how much I actually enjoyed the act of learning and the system of education. The spontaneous banter that occurs with so many different opinions discussing a topic is exciting. Getting deep into issues really turns me on. However, I feel that so many people do not share my same interest. Like I said earlier, people have the right to do things for whatever reason they feel necessary but I feel like going to school strictly for a better job or a career is kind of silly. Why not take a pottery class just because it sounds fun? Why limit your scope of knowledge into one subject? Explore them all. Learn for learning’s sake and the rest will just fall into place. In today’s world, employers are looking for people who are well-rounded individuals with knowledge in many different realms. If you have this diversity and you become tired of a certain job or career path then voila, you have the ability to change that. Learning exists to make all of us more intelligent and wise people with an understanding of the world we live in. Without this drive to discover and learn new things each day, I don’t see a reason for being here. And yes, that is the philosophical “here” in this case and I take that thought very seriously. Education is a gift that should be cherished and enjoyed every step of the way. It is through this process that we unlock the true potential of the human race and great things happen.

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