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The College Experience

By Chris | October 21, 2007

Michael Wesch, a cultural anthropologist at Kansas State University, asks 200 students their thoughts on a Vision of Students Today. The video is available on YouTube.

Having attended Kansas State University, the University of Minnesota, and the University of Idaho I can say that this video does a decent job of capturing the culture in a mainstream public university. More and more students are going to college today to send the right signals to potential employers, learning is an afterthought. The problem with mainstream universities isn’t large classes or professors that don’t know students names: it’s apathetic students. As an undergraduate and now as a TA, I’m constantly amazed at how little work undergraduate students are willing/expect to put into their classes.

The video points to the massive amount of time students spend online. While the internet can be a distraction there is no doubt that it has facilitated the free flow of information that was only a dream even a few decades ago. I’m reminded of a quote in Good Will Hunting when Will criticsizes an arrogant Ivy League student:

“You wasted $150,000 on an education you coulda got for a buck fifty in late charges at the public library.”

Today, you don’t even need to go to the library. When hardworking students get so much out of their college education and others get so little, it is hard to blame the system.

Topics: Education | No Comments »