SCHOOL SHOOTINGS: Yes, they are very sad and a terrible new reality to our everyday living (along with other public shootings) but I just got through reading about a victim who was shot who just came home. Now I have read a lot about this case and know better – although the press has made him to be a victim – school shootings often start with bullying and the inadequate handling of these activities by administration with the ineffectiveness of stopping said activities. This kid and the other ‘victim’ were no innocent bystanders – no they shouldn’t have been shot that should go without saying – but the latest article states the two are these angelic ‘victims’ when it has been shown that the shooter came through other people and could have shot them but had specific targets in mind and only shot these two which by all accounts terrorized the shooter. Yes, the shooter needs to pay for his crimes BUT don’t make people who are not victims be victims. Administrations need to deal with all forms of bullying swiftly and harshly to prevent children from being tortured in schools that lead to these shootings. Make administrations accountable for such behaviors and make people who society wants to make victims answer for their self-righteous self-centered mentality – don’t put them on a pedestal and act like they did no wrong – because THAT is wrong.
I am approaching my fourth year at college attending CNM (Central New Mexico Community College) and now can see why college costs so much. I have been following prerequisites – one after the other because you have to take them in sequence.
I have earned an Associates of General Studies and an Associates of Liberal Arts – neither did I need to attain I just ended up with them as side degrees. Like it matters because they won’t help me get a job anyways. I will also be getting an Associates of Communications.
I had originally wanted to get a degree as a DMS (Diagnostic Medical Sonographer – Ultrasound Technician). When I started out I knew it was a limited entry program with 16 applicants accepted per year but at the start of my fourth year I found out they revamped the program and now the 16 was every other year. I was crushed. If i didn’t get in the first year – and probably wouldn’t since there are thirty registered people looking to obtain this degree.
I did find they had actually developed a degree for psychology and was happy because it was what I had originally wanted to do but with no program I settled for something else. But still I was so close to the DMS program – something I had worked on now for the four years. It was like my baby.
I changed the degree – I feel happy about my decision now but had to struggle with making it. I am a few classes away from getting an Associates of Psychology and oddly enough I am about seven away from a Bachelors of Psychology. Upon further inspection of my transcript I am actually five years away from obtaining a Masters of psychology and a PHD of Psychology or Sociology.
So I am in almost 30K in damage when it comes to the financing I have had to obtain to get this far and figure another 30K before I am done. Which brings to questions of WHY?
Why have I had to take such high levels of math? Why have I taken classes that are required that even the teachers themselves question why the degree is requiring them? The schools answer to this is that they intend to make you a more well rounded individual who will look at life differently when you are done. Is that just a way to justify the fact of how much a student must pay to have to make a better life for themselves?
Does it justify the 250K salary of a president of a community college – not to mention the almost 200k in bonuses and benefits? What about the cost of the new buildings they are building which has an estimated 20% cost for architectural add-ons that are not needed. I also have questions of why does a lab manual look to teach you about equipment that the lab does not even have? …… and then test you as if you have had hands on experience with it. This is not to mention the broken equipment and chairs and the fact that supplies constantly run out with professors sometimes buying supplies out of their own pockets.
So when I am done with my ‘experience’ I will be at minimum of 60K in debt. I will have to find employment and work a years value of salary to pay back this debt (even though it will take me around twenty years to pay it back).
I sit tonight realizing just how fortunate I really am. I may not be where I would like to be in life and may not have everything I want but I do have a wonderful family, a house I call home and I know I have enough to take care of my own.It is always this time of year I sit and ponder about those who are less fortunate then I am, who are not with their loved ones for one reason or another, our military members so very far away in a land that can only be described foreign. I also carry burden of guilt that I have a lot under the tree even though I give a lot during this time of year as well.
There are people this very moment that society has given up on or pushed away because they are different – many simply needing proper medications and someone overseeing that they take it. These same people would be productive members of society with a steady dosage of this or that. But they line our streets, ally’s and craw spaces under bridges and underpasses. I often see them and wonder what their story is, do they have no family and how does a person become what society deems a nuisance? Could it happen to me? I have been known to buy five dollar gift cars and McDonald’s and will keep them in the car and give them to people of the streets as a symbolic message to say somehow that I am sorry society does not care. I do not know if this really helps but it helps me.
Our military stuck in a land nothing like that of their own with the burden of trying to safe in a war that seems unwinable. Many not even having proper beds and certainly not mama’s home cooked meals that always make holidays that much more special. I think of them eating their meals out of bags and the cookies and small trinkets of gifts that their families and concerned people send to them with greeting cards with messages of thanks. Why are humans always finding the need to conquer and dominate because we are always right? Why do we step on another countries soil and play dictator? I know it was mainly a response to 9-11 but it soon became almost a humanitarian mission – to save countries that have gone awry – at least in our eyes.
I also think of the hard working families with children that struggle daily with expenses that we all must have burden of. Some families have more than one parent working full time to stay afloat and they still have so little to offer their children this time of year. Some depending on churches or agencies to provide a little more for their children then they can themselves. How sad that hard workers must face the embarrassment of having to ask for help. It is different for people who have chosen the path of living on government assistance and handouts when they can readily work but choose not to.
I have known people receiving disability with shoulder injuries claiming they can’t work. I also make the situation uneasy when I ask them why they could not use their good arm to answer phones somewhere but always get no answer. The hard workers incomes barely provide for their families and many are just beyond the income and resource guidelines that welfare and similar agencies have in their guidelines. How about we help those who help themselves or those who really can not help themselves. People who are having problems finding jobs really should have to work for their money from these programs that are just giving handouts. I notice many streets that need cleaning – parks that need cleaned and their buildings repainted – how about qualified individuals who can’t find jobs who receive handouts give their craft to those who are working hard like plumbing, drywall, daycare etc.
Another portion of society that I have become blatantly aware of is senior citizens. You know the ones that society and families have passed on only to give them to agencies and greedy corporations to make money on – err – I mean to care for. I ask myself questions about them similar to those who are on the streets. What your story? How did you get here? Where is your family? Some families of course are simply no longer alive because children die before parents, parents never have children and do not have siblings etc. That is sad but understandable. BUT what about those who have families and how they just release what should be a beautiful opportunity to give back to parents who gave them their all. I am not talking about those medically in need of course, but about those who may have mobility problems or long term illnesses that are not terminal. Why do families not care?
I care. I adopt two or three individuals that are in their later years with no family and deserve respect and the right to also enjoy a nice Christmas. I buy everyone of their items on their wishlist and so much more. A box filled with goodies and special treats and little extras for them to share with those around them. I had the opportunity to adopt an older lady and was allowed to deliver my gifts personally. She cried on my shoulder for several minutes and told me I was a gift from God and praise Jesus. I told her I was none of that – just simply someone who wanted to make a beautiful YOUNG woman have a wonderful Christmas. Before I left she hugged me again and she told me she would never be able to say thank you enough. I kept in contact with her for a couple months and then our communication stopped. I wondered why one day not long after our last conversation and stopped by her residence. A moving truck was in the drive and I was told a company had been hired by the ladies son to liquidate her assets. That sweet young lady who blessed me with the opportunity to give her happiness in such a small way was gone. She didn’t deserve to have all of her keepsakes and memorabilia just gone the way of a estate sale.
I decided to attend her estate sale and I bought the simple wooden clock that once had her tears drop on it as she opened it in front of me at Christmas. I also bought a small ballerina music box that she said her parents had given her on her sixteenth birthday. I wish I had had enough to buy more but money speaks louder than emotions and I spent what I had. I wished the people buying her things knew what a special woman she was and how she valued everything in her home. But they didn’t of course and these mementos and keepsake would never be anything more than that special buy they made or a thing they posses or plan to make more money on on eBay and the like. Her life and memories are somehow carried in my soul and i think about her often over the years as I look at that simple wooden clock and ballerina that twirls in the delight of sounds from the music ox beneath her has rung out for decades.
Take a moment and look for something to do for someone other than yourself – its simple – and any money you put out will be given back in a quantity that is priceless to your soul.
I looked forward to my first semester of Fall in 2010 of college with the outlook that I was going to attend two years of college and enter a program after a lot of hard work. I am now entering my fourth year trying to get prerequisites done and still have more to do. I have maintained a cumulative GPA of 3.54 and have just exceeded 30K in debt. I have repeated no classes and every semester I take all of the classes I am able to take – since you can’t take some classes without having taken others.
I still have Physics and a Physics Lab to go through along with a Pre-Health class and can put in my application in Spring 2015 semester which is the earliest I can do it. I am applying for one of the sixteen spots available that will start in Fall semester of 2015 of the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. If I do not get into that semester I will have to wait for two additional years to reapply yet again.
It is beyond my belief that a school that is supposedly a community college set up to run two-year programs can have you attending for a total of five years (which will be my minimum time in school to finish my program) and I figure I will be hitting 50K plus before I am done. I enjoy the fact that I am attending an accredited school which soars in excellence when it comes to perspective employers in this field but should the cost really be so much? Should I be paying so much and go into so much debt so that the President of the school can pull in more than 250K as a regular salary and almost 450K with bonuses etc.?
Why must a student take on so much personal debt? Are some of these classes pertinent to the program I am taking? I have talked to several Ultrasound Technicians and they told me what I need to know for the job will be taught within the program and that 95% of the information I have been forced to learn to even apply for my program useless information. So I ask myself why do I need to know it?
OK! So a college will respond with ‘it makes you think differently’ – I’t makes you a more well rounded individual’. Excuse me? I am 38 and do not need to be any more well rounded then I am ready am and I think well enough to get me through. Maybe this is a situation that benefits a student coming directly from high school but this old dog has little benefit from it.
I recently got an email from my school informing me that my funding will come to a close and that I should have finished my coursework for the degree I am working on now. Really? I have followed the recommended course outline supplied by this very school. So I go in and talk to a financial adviser and they laugh and say oh never mind the email, all I need to know is that I have three more semesters of funding and since I am on the same declared course from the beginning they will extend funding but only cover classes and needed materials that are directly needed for program graduation. I am also told I will not be able to change my concentration of the desired program or I will lose all funding.
Why do American college students go into so much debt? Society? Schools? Is it worth it? I worry about the economy and job availability. I understand that the healthcare field in specialty areas are still strong and employment is readily available for it in my area – but I still have fear. Am I going to load myself down with the burden of 50K plus of student debt only to not be able to pay it back?
Only time will tell – and I guess I will try to keep my head high and looking to the future and hope that my end dream I have been working so hard for is not a financial nightmare.
Are you in a similar situation? Have you already gotten past your school from a similar situation and can shed more light on how you got through it all and how you are doing now?
Love you both – keep working hard and looking forward to a future that is waiting for you to grab a hold of and run with it to have fun. A little hard work now will pay off with a much better future – but it is up to you to want it and work for it.
Handouts from the government is not you standing on your two feet supporting your children Bryan – so keep standing tall and knowing YOU are working to provide for your child.When your daughter is older, you can show her how much you have worked to keep her part of your life. She will look upon others who have taken and never give back and weak and unsuccessful. Keep working at obtaining your degree and show your daughter you are so much more then the bad mouthing she hears from her other side.
Dedication to your work is good, but Zack, please do not forget about family, friends and the love you have from God for without this what value do you have from any gains you get from employment.A paycheck is always nice but if you have no one to share it with or to celebrate life with because you just left them in your past what does it really matter?
I am proud of both of you and you are turning into exceptional young men and I am glad to have been a part of helping you make your way to this point in your life. Always remember, I will always be here with you and for you – non-judgmental with a strong shoulder to bear weight you can’t hold yourself.
So my son who has made huge strides to get ahead in this world makes a bad decision and got very drunk to take his mental pain away. He comes in the door from drinking and is crying and saying “I’m sorry”. It beaks my heart to hear the pain in his voice and the things that he is saying about himself, his value and how he feels we and his daughter would be better off without him.
These are words you never want to hear from your child!
He has worked hard and pays child support and the court keeps this crap up about maternal instinct being so important. Then he hears how the mother spends nights with people and leaves their daughter at a babysitters when he would have loved to have had her especially when it is his day off. The mothers boyfriend has taken his daughter for the whole day and my son has a schedule of three two hours visits per week which will change to three four hour visits and one overnight per week as soon as the court finalizes it.
It is hard to understand how a system fails a father and child who wants to spend every minute with his child that he can, pays every penny required and then faces the problem of a boyfriend who is teaching my sons child to call him dad. If maternal instinct is so much more important than paternal then if the child is not with the mother and the father can take care of his child that should be the case.
My son has seen his daughter in pictures where he is reminded over and over how he does not get to ever get any of his daughters ‘firsts’. It breaks my heart to hear him say he feels like he has failed his daughter and failed his parents expectations of him. His daughter grabs him by the hand and leads him all over the house as she learns to explore her world that opened up because she learned how to walk well.
I have never in my life been disappointed with either of our boys and he certainly is not a failure in life at any point – by God he is only twenty-one. He has made some impulsive ‘know-it-all’ decisions and choices that turned out badly but that does not make him a failure – and no bad decision or choice is bad if you pick yourself up and learn something from the situation.
I can’t wait to talk to him later today – tears were in my eyes when he spoke and cried like a baby in my wife’s lap. I wish he had stopped for one moment sometime and just asked for a hug or asked for a moment which I would have gladly given him to help make him feel differently about the situation life has handed him.
As a parent I want to take all of the burden that my child must bear, to take his pain away so he feels none of the heartache he is going through. I want to rest his minds worries so he can enjoy a time in his life like what we enjoyed with him.
I have always had a huge problem with people who label other humans – and how simple minded and animalistic it seems. Why do humans feel the need to label and categorize every difference we as humans have? I have always hated being questioned about race, religion, heritage and so fourth. I have a hard time checking off the box next to white when they have separate areas for African-American because if you go with that line of thinking I am not just white – I should be categorized as European-American.
Gay/Straight, Muslim/Christian – and all of the countless other titles and labels we cast upon ourselves do not define us as a whole. But then we turn around and wonder why we do not have unity as a whole. How can we – we have already grouped ourselves and everyone around us with a label, separating and defining into classifications.
I grew up in a military family on a military base. When I was little I had a variety of friends with different skin colors and heritages and never thought of them as anything other than my friend. So when does society want you to fit in with others of your ‘kind’ and want you to use labels? – and the sad answer to that is even before you are born.
I took a class in college where the professor brought up a question in regards to this very subject a couple years ago. He proposed a question for human beings in general – How would our differences hinder or help us if aliens came down and wanted to take us as the human race as slaves? Think about that for a second. Would religion, sexual preference, skin color or political views matter? Would any label that we as humans use matter? NO!
Why do we separate people? My feeling on it is humans are still rather primitive in nature when it comes to how our society feels towards one another. We label one another so we can create a hierarchy and want it so that we fit into one of the labels that are higher up so we can feel dominate over others.
I always have laughed at people who have the idea that humans are above all other forms of life. Really? When we study a colony of ants – or a hive of bees – we find different levels of society – but they are all working as one for the group. We do not find them labeling one or the other and no single ant/bee is superior over the other (even the queen) because they all are serving their direct purpose to each other as a whole. They are not individualistic and they care not about acquiring possessions – which is another factor of human stupidity.
Labeling is so ingrained on our basic culture and structure of our brain pattern I do not see the ability to ever have that changed. Would it take a catastrophic event like a comet threatening to hit our planet or an invasion of a species not from this world to make us all operate as one?
What could you do in your daily life to stop labeling someone else? Do you feel it is important to label people and why?