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This assignment would basically elaborate on different challenges that senior high school students experience when they are on their way to becoming meaningful and independent members of the society. The move to step into college life is perceived differently by different institutions of the society. There are known factors that encourage this kind of circumstances and in this assignment I will particularly base my fundamental points to these factors that causes both wretchedness and delight amongst the college students.
I will expound on different views and approaches as explained by the society. I will particularly rely on the already provided literature to source my arguments. Since most students possess different perspectives as to what College holds it means that the sampling views which will be used represent the views of the entire college population.
As college students reach the point of moving into the tertiary side of the education system, that is, college, they are usually not aware of what to expect but it has been evident that most of them view this transformation as a very significant part of their life. This is because the transformation is always taken to mean that the students finally get a chance to abandon all notions that people have of them and go ahead to develop new descriptions of themselves with individuals that they are going to meet on that other side of their life. However, this entire phenomenon is known to cause panic and fear amongst most of these college students. This dread is reflected on students by their worries about new environments they are going to be exposed to, how they are going to re- develop themselves in the new environments and whether close relatives and friends are going to miss them or not. There is always an experience of uncertainty that arises out of tension between the desire for both immediate change and stability as a whole.
In American culture it is clearly evident that parents always aspire to have their children independent at a very young age. When the time for leaving for college arrives, it definitely becomes the instigated moment in their life, because they feel relieved of both their duties and responsibilities as well as begin to feel fear towards the forthcoming independence of their children’s life (Karp, Holmstrom & Gray 3-4).
Leaving home for college definitely is the period as to which students that have finished high school “leave the nest” to go and start their own independent life. Unlike their average counterparts, the rich and well-to-do students perceive this time as the most challenging phase of their life. Most of them associate college life with a stage when they are expected to become fully responsible for their own deeds. Students from relatively poor families do face the challenge of facing up entirely new cultural worlds (Charon 5-12).
Parents expect their children to join colleges and their children have always known these expectations by keeping them in their hearts. Children have made efforts to replicate the commitments by acting towards ensuring that they are met and fulfilled. However, there is always an element of a doubt and fear that they may end up becoming individuals that they have never aspired to be.
Some students’ fear arises out of the feeling that they are not ready to handle an overwhelming amount of college work let alone the motivation that would encourage facing the challenge. However. the independence urge comes out of the feeling that these college-to-be students want to be perceived as grown-ups and reasonable members the society. Different societal institutions have been on the forefront advocating ways of how the college students are supposed to act, for instance, religion institution has tried so hard to conduct get-togethers for the yet to be college students and provided a platform over which these students are taught on how to conduct themselves when in those institutions.
Religion normally holds that each and every member of the society should have his or her actions directed towards a super human being. For example both Christians and Muslims channel their religious doctrines and belief into guiding their life experiences and, therefore, students from these backgrounds acts towards pleasing the super human being in general.
Religions state that failure to perform as to what the beliefs hold definitely means wrongdoers will be subjected to punishment in the end of time. The government institution expects that each citizen adhere to already set rules and regulations and failure to conform to the state of law implicates that consequences must be administered. Both the old and the young are expected to conduct themselves in a manner acceptable by the prevailing guidelines. College students are therefore obliged to follow suit lest they face criminal implications.
Another societal institution is the education institution which expects each and every enrolled student abide by the codes of conduct as provided by the college policies. Failure to adhere to these codes of behavior leads to consequences that range from termination or rather expulsion from the school to mere punishments.
The family is another institution that affects the behavior of college students and for a larger extent the family institution is far the most influential institution of them all in the sense that parents are the fundamental decision makers of their children’s life. They decide which college their children will attend. Both students and their parents find themselves in a dilemma when they are faced with the challenge of which school to attend in the sense that questions arising out of this phenomenon are well beyond issues concerning money, the course to be undertaken by the student or even the amenities of the institutions themselves. Talking about family, college students view college life as a major factor that would deny them the level of participation they have once enjoyed. As family major decisions are made by the unit as a whole and when students leave for college they almost feel that their entire contribution in family matters is not critical anymore and there is always an element of contempt and worry. There is also an aspect of insecurity for both the parents and the students, which is characterized by numerous visits made to campuses by parents as well as the uncountable visits made to homes by most college students.
The society has been an influential partner in the lives of college students since it has devised a culture upon which the different ranks of the society are expected to emulate. The society has established ranks that have played the key factor in the division of members of the society into different classes. There is the upper class member who is considered the wealthiest and most powerful out of the resources that they posses. Then there is the middle-upper class member who is considered to possess more than enough of the resources and is therefore perceived significantly different. Then there is the upper-lower class member who lives an average life and is exposed to average amount of resources. Then, lastly, we have the poor who has little exposure to any resources making him or her a vulnerable being (Karp, Holmstrom & Gray 7-11).
These different classes have different ways of expressing themselves and college students from these families are also expected to express their feelings and views as par their ranks in the society. For instance, students from well-to do families face the challenge of getting to be on their own and try so hard to make it in life just like their parents and they are considered as the group with a higher percentage of doubt pertaining to what college life holds for them.
College students from poor and average families are considered to be very fast in acclimatizing to different phases of life and therefore joining college to them definitely means that they are going to work hard and try to accomplish their main purpose of joining college: to make it big in life. For them education is the major savior for transforming both their lives and people surrounding them (Charon 45-88).
The society has structuralized its members to posses this behavior as a form of identification. All these groups of people are expected to conduct themselves as the society expects them and it would prove completely awkward if this individuals overlook this requirement and decide to act otherwise. It would be a violation of the expectations. College students from rich backgrounds are expected to live flashy lives as opposed to their poor counterparts and therefore friendships in colleges are formed out of this distinguishing factor. New friendship relations are always determined by how much amount of economical resources one is exposed to.
A societal norm refers to a set of guidelines and principles that the society expects its subjects to conform to and a violation to live according to this status is considered a vice. Norms shape the life of college students mostly for the better. The fundamental principal in this kind of norm is morality which means that each and every member of the society is expected to use his or her own morals to judge between doing right or wrong and mostly these norms are constituted of virtues like patience, kindness and love in one’s relation to other human beings. When in college it would be considered morally upright to help a fellow student in needy circumstance and ignoring him or her during this time would be depicted as an inhumane act.
The significant other refers to philosophy coined to explain the “I” and “me” within individuals. The “I” refers to what individuals think or feel about themselves while in the generalized others, individual view activities according to the perspective of the community. College students are no exception to this philosophy and many times they tend to forget focusing on what they really want as individuals and in fact rely on what the community thinks or feels about them. They are forced to make decisions according to what already exists in the society.
It’s said that when individuals perceive themselves as the special lot then they would correlate their immediate rivals with much contempt and enmity. At this stage individuals depict themselves as the ones being down casted and humiliated upon and this would definitely lead to them involving themselves in vices such as racism and an attitude that discriminates upon others. This methodology is mainly attributed to way of life that different individuals lead, for instance, students whose life has always been self centered would be expected to lead their lives as they wish and they would do this by setting their own scope of objectives upon which they would channel their lives. They are usually not interested in what the surrounding holds for them.
The social perspective of college has been translated into a necessary evil which means that students have opted to study not because of the meaningfulness they are going to achieve but because of the need to make the ends meet. The society has depicted college education to mean better way of living since with a good educational background an individual is expected to have access to good jobs that pay well. Unlike in the older days, nowadays people go to college out of the fact that they want to receive education that would be beneficial to themselves and the community as a whole. The meaning of work in the modern world is definitely perceived by Max Weber as a source of human misery.
The social alienation is perceived as a contribution to the way of life for most college students. According to Max Weber, social alienation refers to a money-making platform kind of society that bases its interests in competition rather than cooperation, exploitation of other members of the society rather than sharing with them, and greediness rather than love and respect for others. It’s for this reason that the students have embarked on involving themselves with atrocities that are featured with selfishness so that in the long run it emerges that they were the only ones getting the good jobs available.
Most students who aspire to join college are always in an expectant mood in that they expect to fit in with the forthcoming surroundings. They get so worried when they find out that their choice of college is far much an opposite to what they had expected of. There is always an element of trying to compare one’s identity to the prevailing surrounding and if it proves hostile then it would definitely imply that the student won’t be comfortable in that particular school and he or she would choose to forgo either the school or college life altogether.
In conclusion, it is wise to state that as much as leaving for college is perceived as a major part of one’s life it is far more the delicate process in an individual’s move into adulthood. Personally, when I was joining college I had mixed feelings that made me think that I was perhaps being isolated from the family altogether and made to start my own new life as an adult until I later realized that it was only the beginning of adult life and that major challenges were imminent.