by Bryce Fluellen
According to a recent report from the U.S. Census Bureau, a college degree is worth $1.3 million dollars more in lifetime earnings than a high school diploma or GED! While I am not one that believes money is everything it does make me wonder why some of my peers didn't take education seriously. For example, they would skip class regularly, not complete homework assignments, not study for tests, and never participate in class discussions.
Growing up I was fortunate to have parents who always stressed upon me the importance of an education. They were adamant that a habit of striving for academic excellence would provide me with a variety of experiences and opportunities that last a lifetime. I can recall times when they would reprimand me for mediocre grades. They would always tell me "you can do better," and "you are capable of being a 4.0 student." This is where the foundation for taking full advantage of my education came from. I feel as though one of my purposes while on earth is to learn. Without knowledge, life can be limited and meaningless. I have a couple childhood friends that decided not to pursue an education after high school. They are currently unemployed and struggling to figure out their next move. These friends were the same ones that never took school seriously; they felt like learning was for nerds.
Attending Howard University has opened my eyes even further to what life has to offer. The beautiful and intelligent people that surround me on a day-to-day basis are inspiring! Their eagerness to learn and network with students from all different backgrounds and walks of life is something that motivates me to give 100% each and every day. College is not only feeding my brain, but giving me the necessary life skills needed to be successful in the "real world". Punctuality, Responsibility, Independence, and Decision-making are areas I'm improving in and outside of the classroom. This improvement is essential to my growth as a man and a human being. Without the necessary improvement in these areas, surviving in the real world will be nearly impossible. These characteristics are what can set me apart from people I may be competing with for jobs & business opportunities.
Education is more powerful than anything else in this world so it is imperative that we take it seriously. In the words of British politician and Lord Chancellor, Henry Peter Brougham, "Education makes a people easy to lead, but difficult to drive; easy to govern but impossible to enslave."