Why Wasn’t My Education What I Expected It to be?

'My net worth?  Do you mean after taxes?  Or after I pay for your education?'
An actual discussion with my father

This is just food for thought, and I don’t know if I am the only one feeling this way about starting college, but it really wasn’t what I was expecting.

Ever since I started high school all I could think about is graduating and going to college (Currently at Santa Fe) and do great things. Now I come from a relatively poor family and I always had the question in the back of my head whether college was actually in the cards for me. I always knew it was going to be expensive (That is all anyone told me through high school) so I just put the thought of college as not the first option as what I would do with my life. My mother on the other hand was the exact opposite when it came to  what I wanted to do with myself after graduating. My mother grew up a very hard worker and picked as a kid and for most of her life all she knew was traveling between Texas and Ohio to pick different vegetables and changing schools every year. She did go to college for a year, but she was the only one left out of all her siblings and was forced to drop out because of my stern grandmother and her insecurities about being left alone.

Now I am not saying that I wish that I hadn’t chose to go to college, but then again it wasn’t really my choice. I was bred to do great things and I know this by looking back at all the time that both of my parents spent with me and the classes and social events that they threw me into. I hate to sound egocentric, but I have always been a smart cookie as a kid, and when I was in grade school I was tested and was tried to be put into the gifted program for my county. My mother not wanting me to be classified as weird or a nerd told the school no about a thousand times, and I don’t blame her, even in high school those kids seemed a little off because of the lack of social experience with all the other kids. I figured out my true potential in middle school as they allowed me to take high school courses because the administration began to see how much of a joke the curriculum was to me. Not gonna lie, my first reaction was that there was no way in hell that I was gonna leave my classes to hang out with the weird kids that do nothing but read all day, and I am not looking down on them because they were the conventional “Nerd.” I loved the outdoors and worked on farms pretty much my whole life, so there was no way that I wanted to be stuck inside. At the end of the day it was not my decision to make, or even input to put into the conversation and the next day, I was sitting in a class with the “cream of the crop” of my county. I am glad, of course, of the decision today that I was able to learn at rate that was more suited for me and I was able to challenge my own self to become smarter.

It wasn’t until the eighth grade where college had actually became a thought to me as possible because I had one a four year scholarship to any school in the state of Florida. Me being me did not care much for the award because at that time of my life I had been working for three years and realized how nice it was to have money and the future of being a farmer and taking care of my family. All of my family has been raised to take care of each other no matter what the situation is, and in my mind I always took the situation as growing up as a hard worker and putting food on the table like my father did. When high school started, all I wanted to do was cruise by and get my diploma, but everyone had other plans for me. I was assigned a mentor and was forced into every AP class that was offered at my school without any say, which was not fun for me. AP classes took up almost all of my time, and I still worked from the end of school until midnight. As a kid in high school, I never took school seriously and I guess it bugged people because some administration saw the potential that I had. I was never worried about being the class Valedictorian, but as I figured out the night of our graduation, everyone expected me to be number one in the class and do great things which was honestly one of the biggest stressors of my life; the idea of failing.

Now here I am in present day sitting in my neighbors apartment, typing this blog for my comp 2 class and I am just wondering, was it all worth it?

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5 thoughts on “Why Wasn’t My Education What I Expected It to be?

  1. I think your blog is my favorite among the ones I follow. Education is a lot of things that students don’t understand until they get out into life. Considering school as a preparation for life seems absurd, but it’s kind of true. It took me a long time as a person and as a professor to fully understand it but when I did I realized that school is a shortcut to knowledge. If I’d had to learn everything on my own I’d never have learned as much.

    Then, it gave me something I could sell on the open market so I could earn a living. It just happened (strange but true) that I earned my living by teaching something I learned in AP English in high school, but I needed a masters degree to get the job. I might have pursued a PhD, but 1) I didn’t have the money, 2) I hated school and I loved teaching so the MA was what I needed to earn a living, have a happy life and money on which to retire — modestly in the San Luis Valley, but I don’t want to be anywhere else.

    But, most of all, it gave me an enormous palette, not just three colors, but thousands of colors with which to enjoy my life. I learned how to question, how to see, how to learn, what things are, language for communicating ideas and that has been the best thing about it. I’ve traveled a lot; lived in China, speak several languages well enough to get around — I did all that on my own but with what I had learned in school. It gave me resources with which to meet people, opened up doors (book covers) to great thinkers. I’m grateful every day that I went to school even though, in many respects, I hated it. I was never a good, obedient and respectful “student.” I got thrown out of a college and surprised everyone when I finished my masters thesis, but that’s OK. All that made me a better teacher.

    So…it’s normal to doubt, but take it from me (if you can) ultimately it’s very worth it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am thankful for the comment, and at the end of the day I do know that my education will allow me to do great things in life and will allow me to pursue the life that I desire, I just have the overwhelming fear and thought of the failure as a person.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Going to college was also a hard thing for me to chose. I have been in college for at least 5 years now. I have a minor in graphic design and i plan on furthering my education in the field of photography at the University of Florida. It took a lot of time for me to figure out what I really wanted to do but i eventually got with the program. I am glad that I made the decisions I made because I can now focus on a specific field with no other distractions.

    Like

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