How often do you hear a classmate or college friend say, “I hate this class,” “This class is useless,” or “I’m never going to use this information in my career. It’s such a waste of time”?Viewpoint

It seems cynical to think that with all the four-year universities and colleges using the same model of “necessary general education classes” that there isn’t something these individuals have figured out. Now, they may not have figured it out as well as they could, but it would be wrong to postulate that they are just wasting our time with useless information that we will not profit from in any way. This notion also applies to the classes within a focused major that one might feel are less than needed for the future.

Florida Career College (FCC) indicates that the general education classes are fundamental for an individual’s growth in building skills such as communication, independent thinking and analyzing new information.

“General education courses simply enrich students’ knowledge and introduce them to new ideas and concepts that can boost their general knowledge and appreciation of different topics in the arts, sciences, and humanities,” according to the college’s website.

A college career isn’t just about acquiring the necessities to get a job that will provide us with our dream income. It is about the journey we take to find out about ourselves! Within every humanities, science, math or English course we take, we find a little bit more about our likes and dislikes, talents and weaknesses and, overall, mold ourselves into being more well-rounded, educated citizens in the world.

As new forms of education evolve into the university classrooms, students are allotted the opportunity to expand their minds beyond the things they learned in K-12 that may not always be examined from all angles. New Western historians are changing the fundamental manifest destiny we are all taught, and colleges are encompassing those passionate minds working to transform the education we provide for our youth and young adults who will eventually become the leaders of this nation and the world.

In his bio on the TED website, Adam Burk, founder and director of Treehouse Institute,  states he is a serial community builder and innovator, who has a passion for helping people accomplish things they’ve never done before. When asked his opinion about what the purpose of education should be, he responded with, “education should be an empowering process that allows and guides children to develop their passions, critical thinking, compassion, and orientation towards wisdom for timely action.”

Education should be self-cultivating, meaning we educate ourselves. If we consistently play the “this is a waste of my time” game, we will never realize the potential we have to improve ourselves. Four or five years at a university is a short period of time, and when it is over, things start to get real. Once life begins to happen, it is much more difficult to take a step back and see into what potential we have. Now is the time.

According to, it is essential to take advantage of undergraduate life because it will provide us with many resources and opportunities to succeed. Undergraduate classes are able to get us the information for future graduate school as well as allow us to better our knowledge, skill set and experience.

Here’s the thing. We all chose to come to college, which inevitably means we understand the benefit of it, so we need to stop complaining about the classes we feel are a waste of time and embrace them because when we push the negative side, we tend to miss the positive side that things such as general education classes can provide. Maybe that philosophy or nutrition course will provide us with a relationship that could be the networking opportunity for our future. Maybe we realize that we really enjoy sociology more than art. Maybe we just end each and every day knowing we are a better person because we know more than we did the day before.

Keeping an open mind about our encounters keeps us zealous, provides us with a wide range of concepts to travel through life with, connects us to something greater than ourselves, helps us uncover relationships that reveal a richness we might have otherwise disregarded, allows us to think through our misunderstandings to appreciate more and gives us the knowledge to influence others.

Coming from The Signpost, we are a group of students with a variety of interests that came together to become a force to be reckoned with on the Weber State campus. We wouldn’t pass up this amazing experience for a minute, and the opportunities we have been provided are intrinsically valuable, whether we liked them all or not.



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