From time to time, we hear students and staff complaining about the apathy and lack of student involvement on the CSU campus. Usually, we hear from a person who is involved in multiple organizations, works full-time, has a family of 10, runs a small country and still manages to have a 4.0 GPA. They criticize their fellow student for not attending that one basketball game or for forgetting to write E-S-P-N on their chest at a November football game. In their accusations, they go further and belittle all those who just go to class and take little interest in the campus around them.
Believe me, I can be one of those people, but today I choose not to be. Rather, I want to urge all students to take an active interest in their university experience. To be involved does not mean you have to run for ASCSU president or to start your own student organization. It is finding out what interests you.
Did you know there are over 200 recognized student organizations at CSU that any student can get involved with? They range from religious to social, from academic to recreational. The variety of clubs to join is more diverse than CSU. All you have to do is stop by the Student Organizations Office or log on to www.sc.colostate.edu/studentorg to find out more. That is one way to get involved.
Like many others, I was disappointed in how many students came out to vote in the Associated Students of CSU election. Our lack of interest is pathetic. I know the ASCSU elections may seem like a silly election to an outsider who chooses to be a cynical critic rather than a responsible CSU citizen, but it is crucial for students to choose who will represent them in the upcoming school year. There really is no excuse for not stopping by a debate and interrogating the candidates with your questions. That is why they are there.
I, too, thought ASCSU was just a bunch of power-hungry, cranky kids who never went to class. Granted, some are, but for the most part ASCSU really is out to help students. They coordinate the Transfort bus system, they allocated thousands of dollars to student programs, and they live to make student life better. You would know this if you ever stepped into their office or spoke with your ASCSU representative, but few students ever do.
When I first came to CSU, I was afraid of meeting people who would challenge everything that I stood for. I thought open-minded students who wanted to enlighten me would criticize my naA_ve lingo and open my eyes to a more inclusive perspective on life.
It never happened.
My point is when I came to campus, there was no one to challenge me to be a more open-minded person. People seemed to care more about themselves and getting a job than caring about the valuable education they were receiving.
Perhaps my expectations were too high. Maybe I should not expect my fellow student to reach for their highest goal and make their time here at CSU more memorable.
If anything, get involved for yourself. Make new friends; learn something other than your major. Take an hour and attend a program put on by another student. Do not spend your four, five or six years at CSU at home or in some bar; go and do something that is worthwhile.
You are in college only once in your life; make the most of it.
Ben is a senior majoring in Speech Communication. Comments are welcomed via email.