Is education a top priority?

The time had come for me to plan my trip home. I opened my planner, turned to the month of November and began to panic. Black and red ink filled the page and it seemed like every day I had a commitment to do something. 

Every which way I looked at my month, I was going to have to miss something if I went home. It wasn’t until after I made my decision and booked my flight, that I began to wonder about my classes. 

This got me thinking about my priorities while in college. Family will always be at the top, but I had to ask myself if I was putting my education on the back burner. 

Before I left for my second year of college, my dad told me that my number one priority is to get that piece of paper. Get my degree he said, and then I can worry about adulthood. 

That’s a lot easier said than done as I’ve come to learn. I went to college to get a degree with the hopes that I could be a functioning adult in society one day. 

However, in order to be the best adult I can be, I need to do more than just stay up late studying for my midterm on dinosaurs.

 Students need to ask themselves if making the Dean’s List is more important than doing something they want to do that will get them further in their field of study. 

If I truly want to get the most of my time here, then I need to understand that there are sacrifices that I must make. 

As hard as it can be to admit, working, attending sorority functions and spending time as an editor of The STAR are all things I do that take away some time from my classes.  

Before, I felt bad for this. I didn’t want anything taking my attention away from my education. But as I’ve come to realize, maybe that’s not such a bad thing. 

All of the extra-curricular activities I do make me a better person in a different way. Isn’t that what college is supposed to be anyways? A time to grow up and learn to be better person. 

Yes, students are here to enhance their knowledge and viewpoints of the world, but they can do that through other outlets besides a three unit class.  

The commitments that I have scribbled throughout my planner all have one thing in common; they’re all voluntary. 

Yes, I know that I didn’t have to join a sorority and I know I didn’t have to be on the editorial board of The STAR, but I wanted to. 

I also knew the time commitments of both and I was prepared for how it would affect the focus on my studies. 

Time management is a difficult thing to do. I’ve tried to learn it through many points in my life and I’m still trying to master it today. 

As college students, It’s almost impossible to put the same time into classes as other extra-curricular activities. Whether it’s work, club involvement or sports, students are always going have to rank them in order of importance. 

Don’t get me wrong, my classes are important to me. I turn in my homework assignments on time, go to class and to the library on a weekly basis but am I actually making my studies my main priority in relation to everything else I do? 

It’s important that students take a step back and evaluate their priorities. School isn’t necessarily something I would drop everything for. 

In a time where college students are competing more than ever, it’s difficult to just have that piece of paper when they graduate. 

Students recognize this and know that in order to be successful after graduation, there needs to be more on their resume than just a degree from Sonoma State University.  

Every student will be different, however. One may want to focus all of their time on a single class and not hold any outside jobs or participate in other activies and that’s okay. 

For me though, I have come to the realization that I don’t necessarily have to put school above else to be successful. 

Because, at the end of the day, I know that I’ll be walking across that stage and receiving that piece of paper just like the rest of my peers. 

Only, I’ll have the experiences and memories from my sorority, knowledge and writing abilities from The STAR and a strong work ethic from my job. It’s with these that I can now graduate and begin my life in the real world.