October 24, 2007

It starts with Us

Posted in Uncategorized tagged at 5:07 pm by Katelyn

About 6 months after graduating from college, I accepted my current position.  I was ready and expecting to put all of my energies into this job to prove that I am a hard worker, smart employee, and ready for the responsibilities post-internship. What I got instead was a position where barely enough work exists to sustain an 8 hour work day, let alone taking work home to prove my dedication.  This meaningless work day after day brought on a sense of longing for a time when my brain and intellect were utilized to full capacity and I was challenged by my daily tasks.  The next best thing…create a classroom for myself. 

I began reading the newspaper on-line, continually check out books – both fiction and non-fiction – from the local library (sometimes I even read at my desk), and reading on-line articles and blogs in topics that interest me and make me think.  But I am still lacking that conversation and academic environment where controversy and challenges create the best learning.  I have considered adult education classes in things like web design or foreign language, but it seems much harder to commit when it’s my spare time outside of a full-time job.  I have also thought of going back for a masters degree, but I want to be sure that it is for the degree itself and not just the academic environment that I’m craving.  That is a topic for another day!

I think with the time crunch for working adults, organized classes are more about learning a specific needed skill.  The emphasis is not on growing intellectually or thinking outside of the box, but on walking away with something new to put on a resume.

There have to be other working young adults in our areas that have these same needs for intellectual conversation.  Wouldn’t it be great to create casual, sporadic classes to jump-start your intellect?  What if employers offered classes to employees on topics completely unrelated to our work, like literature, art, or the environment, just to energize us and allow us to learn from each other in completely different ways. 

I think we start with ourselves and lead by example – make it a point in our lives to stretch ourselves and learn as much as we can, in whatever way we can.  We may inspire someone, who may inspire someone, and before we know it – people may be demanding for an adult academic environment (in whatever form it may take).



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