Many of us young adults are pushed into adulthood often having to carry many heavy weights upon our shoulders, which, quite frankly – we are not always prepared for. Many young adults have to balance school, a social life and professional responsibilities. Pressures push us to our limits and sometimes bring us to our breaking points like the six students from the Great Neck North High School. These six students paid off Sam Eshaghoff, a 19-year-old sophomore at Emory University to take their SAT exams.
This is quite appalling behavior, and some may have seen this as an act of being lazy or slacking off - however on the flipside this could have been an act of desperation - these students were attending one of the top-rated high schools in the nation and were expected to live up to a reputation – one that they were simply unable to live up to. The stakes are getting higher and higher, schools are getting more competitive, peers are competing against each other, teachers and parents both are involved in coaching and enforcing them to get into the 20 top schools.
You may ask yourself, how did this come about? How was this even possible? Apparently when you live in a town like Great Neck it’s quite possible to get a lump sum of money - these students paid anywhere from $1,500-$2,500. All they had to do was schedule their exam for a school in which they wouldn’t be recognized, and then Eshaghoff allegedly presented unofficial identification with his own photograph and used the paying student’s name. This was a juvenile act, and cheating on such an exam can be a disadvantage to those who worked hard to study and did not collapse under that pressure and were able to take that test by utilizing their own knowledge and wits. Odds are then being placed against them and opportunities are being taken away.
There are those diligent students who do take school seriously probably find themselves with little to no social life; and those who may not take school so seriously let their education pass them by while partying their lives away; but there has to be a happy medium in order to be successful in life. For me, education is very important and I often find myself buried in my school books. It’s a natural thing to me, I have always valued education. I often find myself sitting on the sidelines due to my workload, however I do have to make an attempt to put my brain to rest, and my social life is just enough to get me by and keep me from pulling my hair out.
Working while in school can be quite dreadful for some – added responsibilities also mean added pressure. Working full-time while going to college full time can leave you over-worked, tired and burned out. Some are responsible for paying their own way into college and have no other option then to work full time positions, while still achieving scholarly success on top of their workload. It is important to have a good professional work ethic, however a full time school career and a part time professional career are more ideal if one chooses to be college driven. College may not be for everyone so someone may prefer to attend a vocational or trade school. Fast track a career path to get them out quicker into the work force with more qualifications than just a high school diploma. Another option can be going straight into the work field, and skip over attending college altogether.
No matter what school district students are from, there are many pressures placed upon them, to either reach for the top if you’re from an under-rated school or to continue to stay on top if you are from one of the top schools. Young adults who are college bound are pressured to go to non-community colleges and universities – but how practical is that? Considering not only grade point averages, but solely from a financial standpoint – many of us are taking out more college loans than we cannot afford and with the economy being in shambles. Many find themselves asking – “How are we going to pay this off if there is no jobs in the market?” It’s intimidating - some people have their parents working longer careers and refraining from a retirement just to pay their child’s way through college. It’s a burden that not everyone can carry, though we are all pressured to do so, one way or another.
Despite where you are from, there are pressures when it comes to a social life, school and work. Not only do we pressure ourselves, but our parents, teachers, friends and society pressure students also. In regards to future career paths there should be a neutral tone towards either choosing to further pursue a career in education or deciding to directly join the work force – this is a decision that will affect your entire life, and only you will know what the right path is for yourself. There also needs to be a balance within the social and professional life, so that the see-saw doesn’t totter over to just one side. We sometimes have to take it down a notch, take a breather, and enjoy life, and other times, it is necessary to buckle down and work. We need to maintain homeostasis in order to keep ourselves from buckling and cracking under such high demands.
This Article was Written by Evelyn Ortiz.
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