Confusion Corner: College means growth, not stasis

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COURTESY GRAPHIC / KAYLA PAYNE

Often on a college campus, it is easy to feel stuck. Physically, you are stuck to remain on campus in order to achieve the credit needed to get out. Mentally, you are stuck as if all of your aspirations in life are still in the processing mode until you graduate.

Especially since there is so much happening out there in the world, it is easy to believe those who are moving around are actually achieving something, while those who choose to stay in one place are missing out.

After all, how is it possible that your voice can be challenged when all of your ‘busy’ work is only reaching the hands of a couple of professors? Thus, your liberal arts education is a fishbowl that keeps you on the inside looking out — covered by clear glass and fed once a day to keep everyone content.

As all of these anxieties about feeling stagnant rise, fear not, for you are not stuck here! I repeat — you are not stuck. Unlike this frozen colonial town, the student body is a moving, breathing and powerful force. College is so much more than the classes, parties and dining halls that shape it. Instead, college is an opportunity to reach beyond and test out ideas and creations, then to connect with others that come from different spectrums of life who may have similar interests to collaborate.

Many moons ago, I attended an art school, where we were pushed to look at college as a playground of possibilities. The greatest thing we were taught there was the very quote, “You already have all the tools you need to succeed.” The difficult part of this is recognizing exactly what these tools are and which ones are most useful to you.

Take time and be patient with yourself and with those around you as we begin and continue to collaborate and shape our community based on our many tools of experience. A university is nothing more than the body of students that encompass it, and our collective voice is much more powerful than we think. And though we may feel detached from such relevant issues happening every single day, direct action is not the only action. It is rather incredible to have the opportunity to reach such like-minded friends here that create movements and ideas larger than the town that keeps us here. So take a breather this mid-semester season; you are not stuck, simply seeding.

Ellie Moonan is a Confusion Corner columnist who wants you to see college as an opportunity to grow.