Friday, July 2, 2010

The Way of Happiness

“Change your thoughts and change your world.”
– Norman Vincent Peale

This summer I am taking ICAP, one of the last courses of my college life. This Organizational Policy and Strategy class will make this month of July very challenging for me. The students here are all seniors (we have to, in order to sign up for this class), and we study various business majors such as CIS (Computer Info System) or Marketing. This ICAP class is therefore a very diversified class.

Last week, Dr. Yue, our professor, told us to discuss about our experiences in UCM, what we had learned, what we loved and hated. I myself had a very good experience. I was taught so many things that I was always thankful for, and I had also made all kinds of relationships with many people. Zahra, the girl whom I was discussing with, also had a good time with the school. She gladly told me her story in which one professor was very helpful to her.

It turned out that, however, UCM didn’t give everyone the same experience. When we started sharing opinions with the whole class, one Marketing guy said that the school’s teachers were uncaring. They would teach the students as they had to, and that was it. They did not care for the students’ personal problems at the slightest, and acted as strangers outside the class. Some students agreed with him. I was surprised. My professors were very nice and helpful to me. How could our experiences be that different? Would the problems really come from the professors only?

What another student said was even more astonishing. He was from Saudi Arabia, and he was a person that when I was doing a group assignment with him the first time, I quickly decided not to be in his team ever again. He said, “I think it’s possible to graduate without learning anything. I will graduate soon but I still don’t know anything!” This statement of his stunned me strongly, as I was filled with things I learned in the past three years. I wondered if we really were in the same school. The professor, as surprised as I was, asked him what his GPA was. “Very decent,” he said, “2.6.”

Just so you know, my current GPA is 3.93, and I still have to try just yet. That guy has 2.6 and is satisfied with it. 2.6 means most of his grades are Cs with a few Bs here and there. He obviously does not study at all. By complaining the school now, he ridicules himself.

The lazy student blamed the school for not teaching him anything. So we certainly can assume that the Marketing student I mentioned earlier was not that involved in his classes neither. The students who contribute in class and show their willingness to learn will always be noticed and get all kinds of supports. They would find the class very enjoyable and beneficial. The rewards for those who try their best, comparing to those who don’t, are vastly different.

We all live in the same world, but this world does not treat us all the same. We are treated exactly the way we treat the world. We can talk about luck all day long, how other people have more money and better situations. But spoiled rich kids never know how to appreciate the goodness of life, and those successful people who are pessimistic cannot see their fortunes right in front of them. People who are at fault tend to complain, and those who acknowledge their mistakes are usually forgiven. Life is just as fair as it can ever be.

We should all live fully, and treat life with kindness. Until then, we may see that the true heaven is not that far away.

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