By: Natasha Huffman
Before I began college I remember hearing stories from lots people, indirectly most of the time, about how people change after they get their degree. When questioned, it was always hard for folks to specify what the changes were, other than a proposed arrogance. Over time this became a fear of mine—that I would somehow morph into someone that I didn’t want to be. It wasn’t until recently, when I’m knocking on the door to graduation, that I have been able to make sense of all of this.
You see, people do change throughout the journey of higher learning. But, it isn’t because they are arrogant–though some may be. It isn’t because something is being handed to them. The change that people experience is earned. Well, how can change be earned you may ask. Actually, there are many ways to earn change. This particular change is earned through all the nights that were spent studying. The intense discussions that occurred while trying to comprehend the numerous words on the pages in a book that has been stared at for far too long. It is earned through the hard work. People in these shoes make a choice to put in effort and dedication towards something that once seemed unattainable.
Believe it or not, attending college is a choice to change. But, what’s important to remember is that the change doesn’t ever have to be into someone you don’t choose to be. We have it within ourselves to decide who we are and who we want to be. The moment that we allow our brain to expand and reflect these things only then will our awareness change. Seeing that for every action there is a reaction, the way we are changes as a result. The change first occurs within and if we are lucky that internal change will reflect externally through our character. The entire purpose of undergoing this journey is to become better—more knowledgeable and more skilled. So, how then can we expect to become better if we do not allow ourselves to change?
A problem at hand here is the preconceived belief that change is bad. Since perceptions change depending upon the person, the way people feel overall will vary. Therefore, it only makes sense that those who recognize the change that occurs in a person is a person who associates change with something negative. Those who see change as a positive thing will associate that change differently.
The point to all of this is to say that through college you will experience a shift. All of your courses will contribute new tools to your box of knowledge. These tools will most likely allow you to view the world to a new set of eyes and if you’re fortunate enough, they will allow you to submit yourself to a paradigm shift. So, for those who see your change as negative, realize that is their perception of your reality. In the end only you will fully know and understand that the change that has happened to you has only done so with your permission.
By: Natasha Huffman