By Brian Nelson
Staff reporter

Four. Four is the count of attendees who stopped by the library Thursday night to listen to two different guest speakers. Among the four, there were two students, a faculty member and a staff member. The rows of empty chairs hinted at a poor presentation. Those who attended would argue different.

The two men speaking were talking about the books they have had published and were offering advice to promising students. “I think our hobbies can be our vocations,” said the first speaker. Yet when students think about their future profession, they don’t consider their hobbies as a potential strength. Instead they choose a career that will land them in a Florida retirement village before their 50th birthday. The years up to that point are long and dragging.

Working for a future retirement is not living. One who does nothing, but work, will allow their youth to shrivel up and blow away. There will be no time to explore the world.  There will be no time to walk the streets of Spain, climb Paris’ Eiffel Tower step by step, or adore London’s Big Ben at the north end of the Palace of Westminster. There will be no time to hang out with friends or catch up with family. There will be no time for anything, but work.

College is a time in one’s life where the future can be turned into any direction. Thus, it is important to seek direction. Students are given advisers to guide them, though many students choose not to listen. This is evident as seen in the library last Thursday night. Two advisers preached to four individuals and several rows of empty chairs. However, there were other individuals in the library doing homework, who closed their laptops and put their pencils to a temporary rest.

The words of the men drifted over the tables and lingered among students who originally had no intention or receiving their advice. “It’s ok to have several passions,” said the second speaker. “I have this passion for writing. I have this passion for literature.” His several passions led to numerous enjoyable careers. He did not stick with the same occupation throughout his life, but instead he followed his passions to different careers. Once he was ready to move on, he did so.

So maybe it’s about time that students take some advice and move on. Forget the money and the retirement village in Florida. Instead, find the perfect career path, no matter the pay. The U.S. is reported to be one of the unhappiest cultures in the world, while some 3rd world countries prove to be the happiest. Maybe it’s time to take their advice and drop the materialism of money.

Brian Nelson is a junior majoring in English.  You may e-mail him at brian.nelson@sckans.edu.