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About Hesperian student / (Lincoln [Neb.]) 1872-1885 | View Entire Issue (March 1, 1878)
TlIK llESUt.T Otf AN EDUCATION.
TUB RESULT OF AZV EDUCATION.
There can be no doubt that a certain
amount of education is necessary to suc
cess in life. Youth is the time for im
provement, and we must make the most
of it. By the fate of circumstances we
are not all situated alike, nor do we all
have uqual chances to gain an education.
Some have to be content with a few
years in a public school, not having the
advantages of a high school or seminary.
A smaller number yet are fortunate
enough to have the privilege of attend,
ing the University, which is the scat of
learning of the state wherein it is situated.
It is to the last named class that our sub
ject refers. What may be reasonably ex
pected as the result of a University ed.
What is the result of any education?
It is the acquisition of knowledge.
"Knowledge is power," said Lord Bacon,
aud therefore an education adds to our
power. This power comes to us us surely
as physical strength comes to the man
who daily practises with clubs aud dumb
bells at the gymnasium. This is a geuer
Now, that the student lias gained this
power, let us look at the result The ed.
ucation which gives him the power should
teach him what to do with it. How he
uses it is the way in which we must judge
of the benefits of an education. If his
course in college has fitted him for the ac
live duties of life, then he is benefitted.
The result of an education depends very
much upon the character of the students
themselves. Many of them allow their edu.
cation to destroy their individuality. They
get an idea that they arc horn to achieve
some wonderful revolution in the affairs
of the world; they think that they arc
destined to fill some high position in the
affairs of thn country. To reach the
height to which they aspire, they must se.
lect a learned profession. Nine men out
of ten who receive a degree could never
entcruiin the idea that they are to be car.
pentcrs or shoemakers. Every man has
his place, and if any one whom Nature
has intended to be a mechanic will allow
himself to be humbugged into the idea
that he can become a great lawyer, or an
eminent physician, simply because he
has been through the prescribed curricu
lum, he is sure to learn, sooner or later,
that he is disappointed. No one is so much
to be pitied as thourin who has mistaken
his calling. If you were to take a fast
trotting horse and harness him to the
plow, aud put a farm horse on the track
to do the trotting, how much would each
do in his new position? The trotting
animal would be ruined, aud the draught
horse would lumber along at a gait, not
much to his credit. So it is with those in
life who are out of place. We would not
discourage ambition, but we think it
should be used in the right direction. It
is a worthy act for a man to rise in his
sphere, but when he attempts to rise out
of it he becomes ridiculous. Education
has the general result of making him ca
pable of estimating his own ability, teach
ing him how to live, and how to be use.
ful as a citizen. He must first sufficiently
understand himself to know what course
to pursue. His education will make
thiu course plain to him, and help him
over its rough pathway. If the student
will but persist in Joing in after life the
work to which he truly believes his pow
ers adapted, his education will be a bless
ing. It is not the fault of the college
course that young men are led to false
impressions concerning their ability, but
of the weakness of their own judgment.
They have formed false estimates of them,
selves. They have looked foward to the
honor of receiving a degree and thought
that with this their battle through life
would be quite easy. A mechanic is none
the worse ofl'for having a diploma in his
pocket, but the pettifogger or the quack
whom Nuturc intended for mechanics arc
not respectable, and all the degrees they
could carry would not make them so.
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