Success: A Murderer?

April 6, 2008
By Catherina Yang, Syosset, NY

What is success? There are various interpretations of what being successful may be. However in the lives of teenagers one thing comes to mind. It is not sex, drugs, or alcohol. In fact, it is education and to be more specific it is college. From what used to be a simple acceptance into another stage in learning now has turned into a race for the “best” and renowned college. Even though there are millions of colleges in the United States, many believe that there are only a few that are “acceptable” which is affecting the system of education quite drastically in many cases.

In a psychology study, teachers were told prior to beginning of school that certain children had extraordinary academic potential, which inadvertently led teachers to pay more attention to those “smart” children and less attention to the regular and average children. The list of “smart” children was completely random. By the end of the year, there was a significant increase of academic ability by the “smart” children and less to the other children. Just by a notion that certain children were more able, teachers took the bias and unconsciously used it to favor those who were considered “smart”. There came to be a dubious sense of equality in the classroom environment. Can it be that the extra pressure to do well has even affected teachers to root out the best of the best to send off to the finest colleges?

The very idea of college has even changed the ways of parenthood from empathy to forceful engagement of one’s role in his or her child’s education. During a teenage life, it is a time when pressure builds up to satisfy parents. A great percent of suicides are committed by teenagers who do not find happiness, which can hold parents reprehensible. Many parents believe the high ranked colleges are what are good for their children. They may be telling the truth, but they hold too tight to the idea of a narrow stretch of colleges and reject those that are unknown to them. In the years prior to college, piles of mail from colleges all over the country arrive through the mailbox and after they have been filtered by the examination of the parents, only the envelopes that have the words Columbia, Princeton, and Stanford make it. The provincial thinking of parents definitely has an effect on others in similar ways.

What is worse is that these new beliefs can turn out to have dire consequences on the lives of people in the long-run. The simple breath of words such as Harvard or Yale raises heads. Respect is most likely given to someone who has the word Harvard in his or her resume rather than someone who has Ohio University. The future of someone is largely determined by the college that he or she has graduated from. This process of judging people by way of education is the worst possible way to evaluate someone. With society over-exaggerating the significance of college, many people tend to get carried away and steadfastly judge a book by its cover.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.

Swoon Reads

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!