By Erin Fuss

I have a confession to make: I purchased this semester’s school supplies over a month ago. I had a countdown going until the first day of school, and even picked out my first day outfit well in advance, only to change it on the first day numerous times.

I was, and still am, genuinely excited for this semester, and for good reasons. College is an experience that you only get once, and while it may be notoriously known for various “extracurricular activities,” many overlook the part of college that we actually do pay for: the classroom experience.

Most of us on campus came here with some sort of educational goal in mind. Whether we dream of being the next great brain surgeon, or the next great actor playing a brain surgeon (I’m looking at you future Patrick Dempseys), we’ve all found something on this campus that makes us tick. Now, the question that worries me: when did hating school become “cool?”

Students on campus have obtained a sort of “holier than thou” attitude for our education and lack an appreciation for a well-rounded education. We walk to our classes with this blase sort of attitude, and unsurprisingly the seats in the front of the class are the last to go, because if you sit there you can’t just meaninglessly text away during “stupid core humanities.” One doesn’t speak up in class without being labeled a “nerd” or “teacher’s pet” and secretly, we’ve all hated that kid who does, because then the professor might not stop talking and we won’t get out of class early. This contagion of uninterest and arrogance needs to end now.

I’ve heard too many people during the first week already discussing their hatred for their classes, dreading the first big test, or mourning the fact that they have to take yet another math course. Now I’m going to go ahead and be realistic and understand that, even myself, one of the biggest geeks on campus, has been tortured with the thought of yet one more Spanish grammar test. In college, it’s natural to experience things you don’t like.

That said, I find it hard to believe that one goes to every class, hating every moment of it. After all, you choose your major for a reason. It’s time to rekindle the flames, dust off the books, and reignite your passions.

Which class last semester really made you think and question the world we live in? Take a moment to sit down and figure out what gets you all hot and bothered in the educational realm. Whatever it may be, whether it’s discussing the latest election in poli-sci, figuring out just how many pounds your balsa wood bridge can hold in engineering, or even, if you’re like me, converting those scribbled out journal entries and sketchbooks into stories and designs through the world of the liberal arts, don’t be afraid to express your inner geek.

Speak up! Ask questions! Actually do the reading instead of just SparkNoting it. Not only will you be getting every last penny out of your education, but you also might learn more about what makes you tick.

For those who state that they’re just here to get in and get out, with no excitement in particular, I’d hurry up and find something that interests you — quick! We have approximately 45 or so years after college to work in the “real world.” If you get a degree in something that means nothing to you, you’ll be stuck doing something that you hate for the rest of your working life. Arouse those brain cells and find what channels your inner geek.

Glasses are popular now, so don’t be afraid to get wrapped up in some required reading to complete the nerd look. This semester, I’m challenging you to find your inner-nerd and love learning again. We’re paying far too much for this education to walk away with tales of nothing more than how much going to class sucked.

Erin Fuss studies journalism. She can be reached at and on Twitter @TheSagebrush.