When I was in sixth grade a very large and very well-known college from Ohio (I'll let you figure that out) came to my elementary school to tell us about an opportunity to receive a hefty scholarship. The candidates for this scholarship would be recommended by a teacher and then notified to fill out an application and write an essay about why they believed that they should receive the scholarship. Well I happened to be selected and awarded this scholarship opportunity, and it was a blessing.
So in case you wanted to know the details of this scholarship, here you go: It is for minority/low-income families. You have to maintain a 3.0 grade point average (GPA) throughout your high school career. The scholarship pays for four years of college and the only thing that you have to pay for is your books. So yeah, pretty solid deal!
After I was accepted I had to attend meetings/workshops to help assist me in middle/high school and to help the coordinator keep track of our progress. Freshman year was year of high school was rough. I was put on "scholarship probation" meaning that I was at the risk of losing my scholarship. I brought my grades back up and I remained in the program. The final event that I had to attend would basically determine if I got the scholarship or not. This program was a two-week stay on the college campus which included going to classes and career exploration.
I went to the college on a big bus last Sunday. When I arrived I found out that I wasn't supposed to be there because my accumulative GPA was a 2.9. I cried. I was told that they were going to permit me to stay but I would have to appeal before their court to explain why I wanted to keep my scholarship. To put it simply, I had lost my scholarship. Putting that fact aside I spent my first day on campus realizing that this college is not for me. One thing after another, uncomfortable feelings and an overwhelming sensation of "Life Rushing" caught up with me. My life was moving way too fast and I felt that I had no room to decide what was right for my life. Which is wrong and exactly the lie that society pushes upon us.
American culture tells us that once we graduate from high school we have to go to straight to college and have a successful career. If you don't, you are basically the rear end of America and you'll make it no where in life. That, my friends is the biggest lie ever told. Men and women that worked tough jobs like mining and steel working (to name a few) are what built this country to survive. They carved their own lives out for themselves, and many of them did it without a college degree. I'm not saying that people that go to college are pansies. You guys rock and I applaud you for chasing your dreams of furthering your education. I'm just saying that we all have a choice to make and society shouldn't be the first place you look to for advice.
I grew up in a family where you graduate high school and go get a job. My father went to motorcycle college and now he works at a steel factory making lockers. My mother created her own successful, and incredible smelling, candle business. They have never pushed me to go to college because it was something that I needed to decide for myself. When I received this scholarship my father told me that he wanted me to complete one year of college and then I could decide if I wanted to continue or not. My parents have been unbelievably supportive and I couldn't be so sure of my decisions if it wasn't for them.
Going back to Monday when I felt all of the weird feelings: I went to my Bible that night and read the most on point scripture to my situation without me even looking for it. It was all mostly in Psalms 107 if you want to check it out.
I then made my decision to talk to the main coordinator of the program and tell her that I appreciated all that they've done, but I was going home and that this college was not the one for me. I felt no hesitation or confliction in my heart, mind, or spirit.
There is no way that I could fully make anyone, besides my parents, understand why I made this decision. Not everyone will support this decision, but I'm not looking for any one's approval. Even if my sixth grade self knew what would know the situation or decision I would make, I would have still gone through the program up to this point. My coordinator of 5+ years encouraged me so much and motivated me to do the best that I could do. I could never thank him enough.
The last thing that I want to tell you about the future that lies before me is that it is in God's hands and He will lead me. If you feel that life is going way too fast (I mean to the point where you're not deciding things for yourself) stop. Shut out the opinions of every person in society, councilors, even friends and family. Listen to what you feel is right and make that decision on your own. The sad truth is that not everyone has your best interest at heart, some will even tell you what they think is best for you, not what you know is best for yourself.