The Bookbyte Blog
College students living on campus need to adjust to a life spent mostly in dorm rooms, lecture halls, the library, and the college bookstore. But they also need to adjust to that hallmark of dorm life: the communal bathroom. It's a pretty dramatic departure from whatever routine you'd established up to this point unless you grew up in a home with a couple dozen siblings.
<a href="http://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/istock_000014661989xsmall.jpg"><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-1724" src="http://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/istock_000014661989xsmall.jpg" alt="Young woman smoking" width="482" height="249" /></a>According to Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights, <a href="http://www.no-smoke.org/goingsmokefree.php?id=447">1,182 colleges</a> in the U.S. have campus-wide smoking bans. To illustrate just how much this trend has taken off recently, back in 2010, that number was only 420. (There's got to be some joke in that second stat, right?) Not all schools have come to this decision on their own: Oklahoma, Iowa, Arkansas, and, earlier this summer, Louisiana have all issued smoking bans to all public institutions statewide.
<a href="http://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/istock_000010312974xsmall.jpg"><img class="size-full wp-image-1718 alignright" src="http://blogdotbookbytedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/istock_000010312974xsmall.jpg" alt="A football sitting on a fanned-out stack of 20 dollar bills." width="401" height="299" /></a> The bigger the business of college sports gets, the more the line between student and professional blurs. They already don't make any money on <a href="http://www.cnbc.com/id/45768248">jersey sales</a> (though most schools just sell jerseys with numbers, not names). And they also don't see a dime for having their name and likeness used in official NCAA video games. That's the official practice, but it may or may not be... technically speaking... legal. Starting with former UCLA player Ed O'Bannon, a total of seven college athletes have joined together on a<a href="http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/college-football/news/20130718/obannon-lawsuit-college-players-ncaa/"> long-brewing class-action lawsuit</a> against the NCAA, Electronic Arts (EA), and the Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC) for licensing out their likeness without permission. This could become a major case, not so much because of what it means for videogames, but because the only way the NCAA has a case is to argue that college athletes should not be granted the same rights as professionals, that their work and their likeness are not their own property, but the property of the college they attend. If the NCAA loses, that sets a precedent for many, many more cases regarding the professional nature of the college athlete.
The traditional idea of a college town is one that's truly built up around the college. These towns have bars and restaurants packed with students. They root for the school's sports teams, especially the local hotels and motels who fill up with visiting family during games and graduations.
It's no fun being an intern. If you're lucky enough to get an internship that actually pays you, it's probably chump change. It's unlikely you're doing the work you want to be doing. You're almost entirely at the mercy of the company you're working for, and they don't have much reason to treat you as well as their normal employees.
This morning, the Supreme Court kicked off its summer blockbuster season with a long-brewing case on affirmative action. We first talked about the case last October, where an aspiring college student named Abigail Fisher sued the University of Texas: Austin for discrimination after not being accepted.
A four-year college degree isn't for everybody. I'd be reluctant to even say it's for people. However, everybody needs and deserves an education. Our society just needs to do a better job recognizing the validity of the huge variety of types of education for different types of people, interests, and careers.
The further along students get in their education, and the closer they get to entering the workforce, the more the line between the two starts to blur. College athletes, for example, aren't getting paid for their athleticism, other than the lucky ones offered scholarships. But in many cases, their hard work is still making truckloads of money for their universities.
Pre-college, summer school is hung over the heads of students like a threat for not working hard enough. That's already an unfair stigma for grade school and high school students, but for college, that stigma truly makes no sense. If you're reluctant to sacrifice your three months of sunshine for a few spare credits, here's a few reasons you might want to reconsider.