On the eve of finals week, it is safe to assume that we are all in a state of overwhelming concern. We are all worried about our pending grades, worried about the lack of sleep we are getting, and the stress of moving back home for the summer. If you are anything like me, you may find yourself sitting around and sulking about your miserable situation in order to avoid all the responsibilities.
Today, I want to encourage you to take the incentive to change your attitude. There is nothing that I hate more than a guilt trip and so I do not want this to come across as that. However, there is something I, and all of us at these fabulous universities, need to realize before this week starts and we get chest deep in self-pity.
We actually have it pretty good. Let me throw some numbers at you right quick. According to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, 578,424 people went to sleep last night without a roof over their head. The American Cancer society reports that there are over 14 million people suffering from cancer right now. Feeding America states that 48.1 million families are suffering from food insecurities. This morning, the families of 151,600 people woke up grieving the loss of a loved one.
So yes, you may have two finals in one day, but you did not wake up and have to get chemo today. You may be sleep deprived from cramming, but at least it is not the lack of sleep due to the burden of burying a parent. The truth is that we are all very very blessed. We have air in our lungs and brains in our heads. We may feel like the world is spiraling out of our control, but finals week has no comparison to some of the days and weeks that others our age have to deal with.
So take those sad numbers and let them give you life. Kills those finals, go get a degree and make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate. Take a deep breath and realize that it could be worse and that you are not hungry, you are not homeless, and you are not dying — you're just stressed.
There is one more number I left out when writing above, and that is the number of students who do not make it to the collegiate level. There are currently about 27 percent of people who graduated high school that did not attend college. Not included in that statistic is the 39 percent who dropped out of high school before graduation. Some people did not get the opportunity to be where we are at right now. As absurd as it seems, there is someone out there that would kill to be at a junior college or a four-year institute taking a final this week.
If you cannot be motivated for yourself, be motivated for those who cannot be here; for those that did not get to come to college, for those that not wake up this morning, and for those that are not going to bed tonight in a home. In the grand scheme of life, a final is nothing to complain about.