With a schedule consisting of five classes, two jobs and seemingly endless commitment, I could not have thought of a more fitting allusion to describe my fall semester: all work and (minimal) play has truly dulled down my life at Concordia this year.
A couple weeks ago, I was presented with some of the best news I have ever received. A few of you possibly know this, but since my junior year of high school, I have dabbled with the writing and recording of music, predominantly hip hop. Near the end of October, I was asked if I would like to perform a show at the U of M’s Coffman Student Union in early December. Naturally, I was ecstatic about the opportunity. When I told my mom, who has been a continually supportive figure in regards of my creative ambitions, she was less than thrilled.
“Jack, it’s a long drive back to Minneapolis. You’ll have to take off of school and work. This isn’t a very responsible decision. I sometimes question your priorities.” I hung up the phone and continued studying for my finance test.
A 2011 study by the Higher Education Research Institution revealed that only 51.9 percent of sampled first-year college students considered their emotional health to be “above average.” With job opportunities becoming scarcer and the worth of a college-degree minimizing due to higher availability of college graduates, the stresses experienced by college students are at an all-time high. We are all focusing tirelessly on crafting a brighter future for ourselves that we often forget to live in the present.
By no means am I trying to downplay the importance of one’s education. I think Concordia has shaped me into a much more mature, well-learned human. But to be frank, if I only focused on school and work throughout the week, I would go insane.
Sometimes it is okay to skip class. Sometimes it is okay to call in sick to work. In the grand scheme of life, school is just another step. I would rather live a life of happiness and collect memories I can tell stories about when I am older than be cramped in a library cell for six hours a night. Maybe a good amount of work and a little room left for play can make me a happier boy. On that note, I will see you in December, U of M.
This letter was written by Jack Yakowitz, contributor.