What do Concordians have to say about staying in school?

By Teresa Seminara on May 28, 2009

As I was walking to school one Monday morning, from Guy-Concordia metro station to the SGW Campus, I could not help but wonder what students’ motivations are to be in University and whether the recession plays a decisive factor in their pursuit of earning a higher education. Above all, the thought that lingered in my mind as I passed my fellow Concordians was whether they are in University because of what other people want or expect from them or because they simply consider education an investment in themselves. 

For many of us, the process of indoctrinating the importance of education commenced from a very early age. It may have started with our parents’ encouragement to go to school and implied further by our teachers and academic counsellors as we grew older. However, motivations vary from person to person and my curiosity has led me to go around campus asking Concordia students to unravel what truly makes them stay in school. 

“An education is about enriching one’s self by pursuing areas of personal interest to greater depth, networking, and to learn ways of improving future prospects” says Christopher Kohan, 23, SCPA & History major. He also believes that the recession is a motivator since the job market is in decline thus generating pressure among viable candidates. 

On the other hand, Francesca Vardaro, 21, Language major, says that the recession has not affected her personally and that education remains a means of personal advancement. Nixie Kaufmann, 25, B.A in Political Science, reveals that education is important for it can provide one with the self-esteem required in the job-market. As for Emilie Salvi, 19, English Literature major, “school is a stimulating and vitalizing place and a great venue to interact with other intellectuals.” She also mentions that an education provides students with the opportunity to develop new innovations that can lead them to explore the alternatives to our broken-down system. 

My “love affair with school” is enthused by the desire of broadening my horizons and allowing myself to make sense of the world’s complexities. The recession is a motivational factor for me to stay in school. After all, the job market has reached remarkable levels of competitiveness and in today’s society a higher education is critical for it not only increases one’s value as an individual, but as an employee to a company as well. 

As I began making my way back to the Guy-Concordia metro that evening I came to the realization that most of my interviewees admitted to being in school to attain personal goals. Moreover, as I pondered about the correlation between recessions and education I realized that although a recession may not be bullet-proof, an education is. On that note, I cannot help but share one of BB King’s most inspirational quotes, “The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you.” 

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