While searching through the attic last week, I came across a stack of academic honors and awards from my years as an undergraduate and graduate student at Slippery Rock University. Seven years of life’s focus is now in a cardboard box that has done nothing but keep company with Christmas decorations, my high school lettermen’s jacket, and a few dead wasps.
I could bring the plaques and framed certificates out, line a wall with them. At one point I was proud of them. But they have meant nothing to anybody, including me, for years.
Those achievements say very little about success or what clients are after in the realm of PT and fitness training.
“Do you care?”
“Can you help me?”
“I know what I need to do. Can we make this somewhat fun or at least pallatable?”
Students in this field: You need to be rock solid in foundations of the sciences. Get an appreciation for related fields. But also pay attention to…life. Take your Liberal Arts seriously. If not, you will earn a degree and box full of awards while knowing very little. You may end up making donations to the Creation Museum in Kentucky because you’re excited to make a difference in the world and have been persuaded it’s a Christianly thing to do.
We all did foolish and embarrassing things in our youth ; ).
Well roundedness will bring you appreciation for the knowledge of others, curiosity, and a creative edge to your work.
Learn to manage your time, be responsible, and exercise discipline. Shoot for excellence and especially virtue. I’m sure that this is going to take something beyond college.
Resolve not to obsess about grades, the perfect GPA. This is foolishness; letting your education get in the way of learning. You’re going to mess up (function less than optimally) and learn at your first real job, anyway.
Most importantly, what kind of person are you developing into through college and beyond?
Because 20 years down the road, the 4.2 GPA and those awards will probably be collecting dust in your attic. Your aspirations and values should have shifted, and there would be something seriously wrong if you need to fall back on an achievement from 20 years ago.
Excuse me while I lead 12 brothers and sisters through discovery this afternoon, in the basement and back yard.
Be students, be teachers
Be politicians, be preachers, yeah (yeah)
Be believers, be leaders
Be astronauts, be champions,
Be truth seekers.