Hard-earned academic success is wonderful. I know what it is like to slave over grades. I have been the person still sitting at a desk in the library at 4 a.m. typing essays or studying anatomy notes with bloodshot eyes and shaking hands. This doesn't happen just during finals week at the end of the semester, but at least once a week for me. So believe me, I know what is it like to pour your heart, soul, and physical well-being into your work.
Although I work extremely hard for my grades, as does the majority of students in college, I don't want to see your GPA when scrolling on Facebook. It really is that simple. I think your GPA, as well as mine, is private information that belongs only to ourselves. There is nothing I dread more then going on social media after final grades have been posted and seeing countless statuses proclaiming: "I made Dean's list! 3.8 GPA!"
I am truly happy for those who have succeeded in doing their best in their academics. You should be proud of your hard work. But I don't want to see it on Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat. I believe this is information that you should keep within your employer's and family's knowledge only. Even if you are proud of your accomplishments, there are appropriate times to share that information, and inappropriate ways to share that information.
Think about the several fellow students that read your status about your high GPA or your Dean's list status. Several of those students probably did not receive as high of a grade as you, while a handful might have done better. Think of the "average" students, who now feel embarrassed for their lower grades, even if they worked very hard to get them. It takes away the joy of those with lesser scores on their transcripts, even if they should still be very pleased with what they have earned. It undermines others when you post your higher GPA, regardless of whether you intended to put others down or not.
When you post your grades on social media, you are further perpetuating the suffocating culture of comparison we live in. It's now nearly impossible to not compare ourselves in some way or another in the age of social media. Even though I work hard for my grades, I can't help but feel disappointed in myself when I see people posting these statuses about their "bigger" success. I sometimes get discouraged because I worked so hard for what I did earn and I can't help but wonder why my grades are not as high when I did all I could. However, do not twist my words; I am not offended when you post your grades. Instead, I simply feel embarrassed over my "lesser" GPA. I feel like my own hard work means nothing when I still won't earn what society deems perfect.
Of course, I immediately put it back into perspective and remind myself that these GPA's don't really mean that much. In a number of years, it will not even be relevant. Even more so, it's important to not be defined by grades, your GPA, or making the Dean's List. It would be truly sad to define one's worth based on the scores on a transcript or to build one's self-esteem on something as subjective as grades. Grades don't even come close to telling you what you need to know about a person. Grades are one small way to measure intelligence and discipline, but it would be foolish to think this is the way to measure brain power or to get clues about the true character of a human being.
You are better than posting your grades on social media and, subsequently, demeaning others. And you are better than feeling like lesser of a person because of other's grades. Please consider these things the next time you want to toot your own horn via posting on social media or the next time you feel bad about yourself when seeing other's GPA statuses. Don't think about only yourself in the process, but also about how you come across to others, how your post might make your own friends feel, and consider simply celebrating only with your immediate family. In future semesters, I will simply no longer use social media during the couple days around final grade posting to avoid this altogether. Yes, your success is wonderful and you should be proud of your work ethic. Scholarship is exactly why you are in college! But maybe just go out to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory next semester when final grades are posted, get a nice scrumptious piece of cheesecake, and call it a day.