Service class: Students could use perspective on the realities of real worldIt really isn't a bad idea -- asking college students to participate in some kind of community service before they graduate.
It isn't even a bad idea for high school students.
Many schools around the country are implementing such a requirement and it is having an effect on those students who are completing the work.
Let's face it -- many children today have it much easier than those of decades past. Offering them the chance to see that there are people who are struggling and children and families who do not have what they have is a chance for them to get the first dose of reality early.
And, to be honest, it also teaches them some of the most important qualities a person can take into adulthood -- perspective and compassion.
If more young people got the chance to see the realities of the social issues they protest about and got a closer look at what it costs to deal with their aftermath, perhaps they would make better leaders when they are charged with handling the same problems someday.
And even if the result is not so grandiose, if spending a day delivering meals to seniors makes a 20-something person think for just a moment about the less fortunate people who live around them, but whom they might not notice, then that is a victory, too.
And after we are finished with the college students, perhaps we can enroll a few adults, too.
There are still way too many of us who sometimes forget to count our blessings.
Published in Editorials on December 17, 2009 11:19 AM