Priorities in the University: Response Essay

Priorities in the University: Response Essay

Even though education is not the only path to success, it should remain an end in itself and not a means to an end. The traditional university setting no longer meets the 21st century learners’ needs since the rigid curriculum is becoming largely irrelevant. According to Arum and Roksa (2014), in the conventional college structure, the occupants constitute a community of scholars and not self-seekers. Therefore, since university represents the peak of the learning journey, higher education should satisfy the students’ desires as they are more consumers than knowledge seekers. Initially, the university aimed to produce “hardcore” professionals with sound expertise in their specialization areas. However, that is no longer the case given that people now need social skills to apply their acquired competence effectively. In this regard, the modern day’s emphasis is to support an education system that produces self-sufficient individuals and not merely content masters. Correspondingly, universities should focus more on not-strict-academic priorities that academic priorities.

I acknowledge that life and job demands have significantly changed, indicating the need to transform how people approach livelihood and living at large. Subsequently, I maintain that non-instructional priorities should dominate the learning outcome in the university. Higher learning institutions should consider what the millennials want from dedicating their precious time in studentship to guide the formulation of the learning objectives. In this case, meeting my needs, motivation, and factoring in daily experiences should be my college priorities. Arum and Roksa (2014) assert that universities should instill behaviors and attitudes, which conform to current societal values. Besides, I expect the tertiary institution to blend technical and social skills, such as socialization, communication, problem-solving, and creativity competence. I concur with Arum and Roksa’s (2014) view that universities should balance instructional and non-instructional outcomes to give clients value. Additionally, the university should prioritize nurturing my talents. Arum and Roksa (2014) suggest that colleges should customize the curriculum to correspond to personal lives since unique capabilities deserve investment. Hence, I anticipate getting more time to engage in extra-curriculum and leisure activities.

My instinct and interaction with peers and technology have shaped my understanding of what ought to be my priorities at the university. My colleagues, friends, and family members, we fall into the same period of life, appreciate that learning facilities should adopt flexible learning frameworks and practices to allow the learners to do what they love the most, ultimately giving them the best educational experience. Arum and Roksa (2014) contend that matching curriculum with personal lives increases the completion rate. Consequently, most of my peers assume that embracing not-strict-academic priorities is the most practical way to make university life fascinating. I have also affirmed my comprehension of how learning institutions should treat the students from what I come across in social media and educational sites. Arum and Roksa (2014) contend that most millennials rely on social networks to learn about their courses. Moreover, I have borrowed ideologies from counselors, particularly sociologists, psychologists, and philosophers, with whom I interacted or read their works. Thus, my viewpoint on college priorities result from a combination of my intuition and exposure.

I have spent more time in social pursuits than academic work in any given “normal” academic term in college. I estimate that I spent about 15 hours a week on class sessions, homework, and any other class-related tasks during my previous experience. On the other end, I spent more than 50 hours on average weekly on social engagements. Hence, I allocated about four times my time to social activities than the period I concentrate on purely academic work. My time expenditure is comparable to Arum and Roksa’s (2014) case, where students at the University of California spend 13 hours a week and utilize the better part of their week on recreation. I find social events more engaging and bear effectual academic impacts compared to the absolute instructional circumstances. Consequently, I aspire to see the entire university program becoming highly flexible and social-oriented rather than entirely academic.

Most of the social activities I engaged in during the last time I had a standard academic semester aimed at improving my personal growth. I anticipated boosting my social network. Arum and Roksa (2014) posit that universities should encourage team-building, primarily through group work, focus on interpersonal relationships, and train students to relate, manage, and lead. In this context, I connected with friends on social media, chatted with some face-to-face, and hanged out. Moreover, I engaged in community service because I feel voluntary work enhances my bond to society considering that education should promote social engagements (Arum & Roksa, 2014). Furthermore, I was active in sport participation and going to theatres to enrich my talents and abilities. My social practices’ primary facilitators’ opportunities were the Internet, peers, and sport and theatre facilities. Accordingly, I was vigorous both in the online and physical spaces and utilized the supporting resources effectively.

The distinction between academic and social is false. It is impractical to separate learning and social, given that a school is a social place. Besides, it is the society that influences studying. In this respect, society’s modifications direct transformations in the education system (Arum & Roksa, 2014). Similarly, the school that considers socialization as a pillar of the positive educational consequences influence how people behave in a given community. When learning institutions focus more on personal development, they increase the chances of students transitioning successfully to adulthood (Arum & Roksa, 2014). Opponents of emphasizing non-instructional over instructional approaches in the university claim that trainees will graduate with insufficient content, thus incompetent to handle technical tasks. Nonetheless, the students will be academically adrift but socially functional, making them socially fit and morally upright because improved social activeness raises sociability and increases academic, personal, ethical, and cultural adaptation (Arum & Roksa, 2014). Subsequently, it is advantageous to produce people with ethos, flexibility, self-actualization, and culturally sensitive rather than releasing experts with weak socialization skills.

Education should be satisfying on its own without the necessity to lead to something else, such as securing a job to realize the value of studying. Providing education is a business, which can either be public or private and students are the consumers and merit the treatment that clients in the typical enterprise arena receive. Hence, education should be a final product that cultivates the desired individuals in society, signifying the significance of boosting the investment in social activities and reducing instructional techniques. I expect the university to help me meet my wishes, motivate me to enhance my specialty, and appreciate the ongoing events in designing learning practices. Therefore, I anticipate being part of a college community where social and life competence takes center stage. Tertiary institutions should foster robust personality and identity development and enable students to pursue independence. Accordingly, universities need to tailor-made the learning exercises, objectives, and outcomes to incorporate technical, cultural, historical, and sociological aspect to create well-rounded people who fit any social setting.


Arum, R., & Roksa, J. (2014). Aspiring adults adrift: Tentative transitions of college graduates. University of Chicago Press.

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