A Student’s Manifesto: Wasting Four Years at a Company Called College

0a9a1058I appreciate every opportunity my parents have given me.  Without fail for twenty-one years they’ve earnestly acted in my best interests and cultured me using the most contemporary knowledge available to them at the time.  After several meaningful relationships and witnessing how many of my peer’s families function, I feel very comfortable saying that I have an exceptional family – which is something I used to believe was common.

As just said though, I believe my parents raised me using the best knowledge available to them at the time.  And even they will admit – hopefully not as regret – that they’ve learned things over the years that have changed their philosophies, and would have made them act differently.  Living in an age where culture and knowledge is so tumultuous and dynamic makes this inevitable.

Now nearing graduation after staring college roughly four years ago, I know that I will never mandate my own child to pursue higher education.  The inherent value of a college education that my parents believe to be true is one that my own experience has revealed as outdated.  I’m fully aware that my experience is not universal, so please consider the following as no more than an honest account by a critical person – pertaining to an institution believed to be invaluable to one’s growth and development.

The majority of American universities are believed to be, and advertise themselves as, places for experiential learning.  I’ve found this to stem the fact that these schools no longer have the staff or competency that is necessary to providing what they were historically designed to offer, theoretical learning.  The experiential learning that has always been considered a peripheral enhancement to the college experience has now widely become the main reason to attend.

It is very easy and un-investigable for a university to claim they have the perfect environment to “try new things”, “explore one’s potential”, and “meet exciting, well-connected, and motived people”.  It is even easier for them to sell such rubbish for a high-price by playing off a parent’s protective concerns by saying that such opportunities are provided in a safe and controlled environment for their loved one.  But this is a lie, because true experiential learning is only learned when a person is willing to take risks and pursue ambitions.  And it is immoral for any person, or institution, to advertise that they can stimulate such life learning more meaningfully than life itself.

This article continues at mynamessebastian.com

About the author: Sebastian Scholl

My interests are extremely varied, as I am a musician, artist, athlete and scholar. Over my first 21 years I’ve had my artwork commissioned, performed music and dance publicly, become a nationally recognized athlete in multiple sports, critiqued film festivals, created a new style of photography, represented a major clothing brand and traveled around the world on more than one occasions. Born in Miami, Florida, my mother and father believed that developmental learning through travel was the highest quality education. Thus, my siblings and I were each home-schooled till the ninth grade. Wings ready or not, by then we were ready to leave the nest. Starting high school, I attended a boarding school for two years in the heart of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. Here I developed an obsessive passion for whitewater kayaking. For my junior year, an opportunity arose that allowed me to travel for the year with my kayak, while staying on course academically; I never looked back. I soon found myself paddling the small creeks of southern Mexico to the colossal river valleys of western China. After the dream ended, though, I finished high-school back in Colorado at a public school, where I believe I had my first "normal" experience...ever. Since then I've spent my past three years at Boston University pursuing a life of opportunity, and have yet to rest in hopes of finding one that best suits me.

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