Going back to school evokes various emotions in my family. Rachel is looking forward to her senior year in high school. She has a light schedule (with no Math classes) and plenty of time to work on her music. Ethan, not excited about the early mornings, is looking forward to reconnecting with friends and enjoying the perks of advanced classes. I am grateful to be starting my sophomore year of college. I am thankful for the opportunity to attend college, and so pleased that I am suited for academia.
Returning for the second year is less stressful, yet comes with it’s own set of anxieties. I know what to expect when it comes to homework, class participation and professors. I can mange my time to accomplish day-to-day living, as well as course work and required reading. I study effectively and have proven that I can get good grades. I will build social networks to help myself, and other students, save time and get higher scores. But American Sign Language is no “walk in the park” with arthritic hands. I am a total groupie for Shakespeare, but this is a third year class and I am unsure that I will be able to keep up. New discoveries through scientific research has changed History since I studied it in high school. Will I be able to re-learn what I was taught so many years ago? And who ever wants to take Sociology?
Rest and relaxation are overrated. The lazy days of Summer are necessary to rejuvenate your mind and spirit, but three months is enough. The beginning of a new school year is not the end of summer, but more the start of new things to learn and skills to master. And I cannot wait! Thanks to my research project of last year, I will start from day one organizing and gathering classmates for my social media groups. In the process, I will expand my personal social network and update the network I established last year. As the networks grow, more students will find the help they need to succeed in their respective classes. I have been looking at ways to track these social networks to determine their value to college students. This will help me fine tune the systems to insure maximum efficiency for all students involved. My ultimate goal is to make these networks flexible enough to be adapted to any class or any group of students depending on their need.
At the end of one’s life, there is still much to do. I have lived more than half a century, but instead of slowing down, I am just learning to live. When I was a young girl, probably no older than Ethan, my Grandmother told me that I should always be smart enough to know that I do not know everything. I dismissed it at the time as the unrelated ramblings of an old woman, but now I consider it the most important advice I have ever heard. I do not know everything, and I want to. Which is why I tackled the ambitious goal of college as a senior citizen. I am often asked why I go to college, and will I ever use my education if or when I finish. I go to college, because I want to learn, I want to know what I do not know. And will I ever use my education? What a silly question! I use what I have learned so far, every single day.
And there is so much more…..