Carpe Diem!

urlMy reading is going well! I’ve reintroduced the habit to my nighttime ritual, and I feel like I’m sleeping better as a result. I just started reading Since You Asked by Maurene Goo, a YA book about a high school sophomore dealing with the consequences of a major mistake. I’m almost finished with Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be by Frank Bruni. It’s a nonfiction book about the craze surrounding college admissions, and Bruni makes the case that there’s more to be earned from college than a degree.

In Chapter 5 “Beyond the Comfort Zone,” Bruni discusses branching out from your usual setting to discover other perspectives. He interviews multiple people who support the idea that no matter what job you have, you will be dealing with people of all sorts in some form or fashion, and “college campuses are the perfect place … to learn that” (108).

My high school is one of the most diverse in the area, and the kids are lucky to have opportunities to meet others who don’t look like them. There’s a club or organization for pretty much every interest. However, I wonder sometimes if there’s some self-insulation going on, if they don’t take those chances to step outside their homogenous groups to have a conversation with someone they deem “different.” We have a tendency as humans to stick with what we know because that familiarity provides safety. But what if we took a risk? What would happen if you chose a different seat in class next to a kid you’ve never really talked to? What would happen if you joined your lunch table with the one next to you and shared a meal with a different crowd? I can tell you what wouldn’t happen: the sky would not fall in, and the world would not stop turning. As a matter of fact, your life might be so enriched by crossing that line that you’ll wonder why you ever waited so long to do it! You don’t have to wait until college to broaden your horizons with perspectives of “other” people. You can do it right here in this high school! And when you rise to the next level, you’ll be just that much more prepared than your peers who decided not to accept the challenge.

(Dead Poets Society teaches this lesson best!)


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