(Photo Illustration by Autumn Mariano)
(Photo Illustration by Autumn Mariano)

Wildcats, we are one gluttonous break away from the end of the semester. I’m sure many of you, like me, will be spending a good portion of your Thanksgiving break writing final papers and preparing those last projects. It almost makes the extended weekend seem like a never-ending study hall, rather than a short break to spend time with family and enjoy America’s best holiday.

This semester has been really challenging for me, and the end of it will likely hold true to that pattern. I’ve got more than 20 pages to write in final papers and several big projects that are all due the week after Thanksgiving. The end of the semester is bittersweet because there’s so much to do, but the finished product is so gratifying.

It is during this bittersweet and stressful time that I find remembering how lucky I truly am to be difficult. I’m sure many of you fall victim to this as well. With a disproportionate amount of work compared to the time that is left to complete it, it’s easy to forget the point of all of this: obtaining an education.

Did you know that only 7 percent of people in the world have college degrees? In the U.S. it’s easy to take a college degree for granted. It’s almost become an expectation if you want to get a good job, and often a degree by itself isn’t enough to break into one’s desired field anymore. Now we need internships, connections and a social media presence as well.

It’s so easy to take one’s education for granted, to see it as a mere stepping stone on the way to bigger and better things.  In reality, an education is the bigger and better thing.

Being able to attend Weber State and earn a degree is a huge privilege. It is an opportunity that many people, even the U.S., will never have. Having an education sets you apart, not only in a job search, but as a person. The things you learn on your way to a degree, and the way those ideas broaden your mind and your perception of the world is worth more than a job prerequisite.

Yes, the end of the semester is kind of the worst. It’s stressful, and in all honesty it’s kind of unfair that we’re expected to do so much work while in a turkey coma, but it’s worth it. The payoff of receiving not only a degree, but an education, is totally worth all the stress of these last couple of weeks.

We’ve got two weeks left, Wildcats. Two weeks to complete those projects, write those papers and study for those tests. And when the stress gets a little out of control, take a moment and remind yourself that when everything is said and done you’re not just going to be one semester closer to earning your degree— you’re going to walk away as a better, more educated you.

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