There is no doubt that academic competition is very strong in the Asian community. From private tutoring to summer classes to many extracurricular activities, Asian students balance a heavy schedule from a young age. As the new school year begins, the war has just begun. To get into college these days, just receiving good grades will not necessarily get you into a prestigious school or guarantee a scholarship. College is looking for well-rounded students that show excellence and leadership in the activities they partake. With school, exams, and SAT’s to worry about already, students are pressured to do everything, even if they aren’t interested in doing what they do. Is it worth it to do everything and successfully be admitted into the college of their choice, or is it a waste of valuable time to actually get to know one’s self?
The pressure to be a perfect student is somewhat understandable. With a good GPA and strong extracurricular activities, a student will get into the program of their choice at a prestigious institution. With these institutions comes internships and other opportunities. These experiences help you to connect with the right people in the real world, and eventually, the student will obtain a high-paying job with many benefits. How do we account for students that end up highly successful careers without taking the same journeys of those perfect students? Singers, actors, dancers, models, bloggers, and vloggers are also high-paying jobs once an individual becomes successful. Not all these individuals go to college or received the highest grades, yet they are able to live lavish lives. These students explored their interests and took up careers that helped them continue to follow their hobbies and passions. This is not to say that the perfect student does not enjoy studying and a certain field.
It’s always unfortunate to hear students punishing themselves or taking their lives over what they consider failures in their academic careers. How much stress were they under to have them think that there was no future ahead of them? Society says to for everyone to find individuality and be different. People have different journeys. Some may take longer time than others and others may be more fit for another path. It’s sad that these students were not able to receive the support or aid needed.
I am in awe of the perfect students. Their determination and accomplishments at a young age are amazing. On the other hand, I wonder if they had the chance to explore, where they would be now. Instead of following the system, how different would they be? I value academic success, but I also value having a passion or interest in a topic. What’s the point of living if there’s nothing that excites you? You’re just a robot if you follow what others do or tell you to do. You’re no longer an individual, an individual acts on their own.