Colleges should focus on more than academic success

ArashTadjiki3_3 Colby Patterson
Arash Tadjiki

Arash Tadjiki

Getting accepted to college requires us to suffer through a series of tests — SAT, ACT, finals, etc. These tests are used by colleges to predict how successful future students will be at their institution. These methods are designed to help the majority of students, but universities should look beyond test scores to determine who gets in.

There are plenty of students who have had a successful college experience but didn’t ace their SAT. Colleges should also consider letters of recommendation, essays and extracurricular activities.

Higher education institutions should also apply this holistic approach in classroom environments. I would argue that the student who is actively engaging in class every day will get more out of the course than the person who never shows up, crams for the test and accepts whatever grade they get. But classes are often designed to favor the latter. I have been in situations where I am not interested in attending the lecture, and I know that, most of the time, the repercussions will be minimal.

Almost half of the students enrolled in colleges across America drop out. It’s time we look at why, outside of financial reasons. It’s a vicious cycle: It is easy to fall behind if you don’t go to class, and it’s easy to decide not to go to class if you’re getting a bad grade. Instructors should take a stand and demand students to show up to class and give 110 percent. The university should emphasize class participation instead of basing everything off of the test score attached to a tuition-paying name on the roster.

Currently it seems our college institutions are being run purely as a business, with not enough emphasis placed on true academic achievement. Students who are engaged and interested in a class will have more success. Colleges should start accepting students based on a more integrated approach, and be willing to grow and adapt their campus to accommodate and encourage a new generation of students to thrive.