Wednesday, January 10, 2007

They Can Sing and Dance Though

My boy posed a difficult question to me a few moments ago. He asked, what is the social state of college students these days? Do they care at all about political subject matter such as gas prices or the war in Asia (Middle East)? He asked because he indicated that he was not seeing or hearing about any students, especially African American college students fussing or protesting about anything.

I thought about this and instantly agreed. I could not provide him with an answer or any statement regarding the subject mater. Albeit I teach at a HCBU, and a medical school at that, I do not see any interest in anything other than selfish and personal interest. I have students that purport the disposition that since they are paying for their tuition, that they should be given a free ride and just passed. For some students, it appears that it is a burden and even offensive for an instructor or professor to give the readings and expect them to read them. I have even had students indicate that I give/gave too much work and that I likewise give to many readings, assignments and test. I even had a student indicate to me that she was not prepared to take her mid-term but was able to discuss thoroughly the show Flavor of Love as I was passing out the test.

I hope that something happens soon that makes people, especially these purported future leaders of the tomorrow develop to their full potential, or else we may be going back in time, maybe even to a point of slavery.
We already do the work of the KKK now as evidenced in most of or popular culture. So to answer my Folk’s question, I do not know Al-Veen, but like you said, they can sing, rap and dance though. :(

15 comments:

Sylvia Hubbard said...

I don't know if I want to just blame the college youth, T. Sometimes those teachers give outwork without making sure there is comprehension in understand all that they are giving you to read. some of the teachers are not taking the time to relate the information and making it significant so the youth walk away feeling this is just a required course and I'm going to do my best. Not with a learning and understanding attitude that was done back in the day.

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

Sylvia, you speaking about me, i have students that complain and say i give to many eadings, I am thorough - got faculty of the year here and other places. I cannot hold their hand or ask them to study. Besides, if they had to select, most would look at MTV as opposed to actually do statistical problems and we all know math is practice.

VAR said...

Hey Torrance...
Please continue to give your students the kind of work that challenges them to think! Dont become one of those teachers that starts having their students rap and sing their homework assignments..lol... These kids dont seem to care at all about what's going on in the world. I even see it at the hospital where I work at as the only thing the young residents are concerned with is making sure their meal ticket works so they can eat rather than taking care of their responsibilities which include paitient care and completing their medical records, dictating, etc etc.. But yeah, they got the bangin ringtones and know where all the spots are for partying...lol...

Peggy said...

MTV may be one of the problems T. When we were in school MTV wasn't catering to black music or black culture like it does today. I am not in the academic community but I can imagine that entertainment, technology, and general convenience overload contributes to today's students ADD and selfish behavior. Heck, we were all selfish back then to some degree. The difference is that we didn't have nearly as many things at our fingertips.

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

dont worry Anthony, I will and Peggy as usual you are so right.

Anonymous said...

I think the problem is not so much the amount of work that is assigned at the college level as it is the educational foundation from which many students approach the work. In my studies I have encountered many students who where A and B students in high schools that were ill prepared for the academic demands of colleges classes. Many of my classmates did not know how to study, and believe me, it is more to studying then just reading the materials! In high school the test materials often hone recall and memorization skills. Students often lack the ability to truly synthesize the information and extract the main ideas presented. Those with underdeveloped analytical skills may find it very discouraging to read large volumes of information that they do not understand, and thus, choices not to read them at all. Their ability to clearly recall who said what and did what on Flavor of Love demonstrates recall not analysis. Besides, this particular show integrates events with personal interviews, completely eliminate the need to process anything because the characters explain exactly what they where thinking and why they did what they did.

So what’s the answer? I don’t think that there is one clear answer. As a student I don’t think that teachers should give less work. Most topics can not be summed up in one or two articles; however, I think that it may help all parties to understand where the other is coming form. I know that teachers do not have the time to hold students hands, but it may be helpful to institute 2-3 page writing assignments that requires students to identify the main ideas presented in 3 or four of the articles assigned, string those themes together, and give their opinion. This will help the teach know the level of comprehension among their students as well as allow the student to practice analytical skills that they may lack

I think that a student’s ability to analysis class topics impacts their ability to synthesis the world around them and their ability to impact it.

Aba

Anonymous said...

Well I must agree with you that college students today don't protest and take a stand for or against matters that they should but I don't think popculture has anything to do with that. I believe nobody comes out the womb knowing how to do anything. We are all a blank canvas. If parents would of showed their children how they protested with pictures and what they accomplished through these protests maybe we would be emmulating the methods of our past. Nevertheless we live in an everchanging world where we have other methods of making changes and getting our voices heard. There is the web the media news papers and tv. Luxuries that were not afforded to our people in the past because of racism and so forth. Another factor is the fear of being arrested. Any criminal background would not be the greatest for someone trying to pursue a medical degree. Some might say that is selfish to put ones own personal growth and maturation over political views but my thing is in order to be heard I mean truly heard you have to have some merit or be respected and in todays society that means one of two things havind money or a "Dr" behind your name. That's my opinion as a young college student.
And as for students who complain about work loads given by professors are just plain lazy. I don't believe any professor in is correct state of mind would give a student more than they could handle. That's why when I get a work load that is heavy I look at where I could give up some time for a week here or there. Whether its watching tv or going out with friends. I don't think enough of us look at the picture as I do when it comes to hard work. I know one thing I'd rather read a thousand pages a week than pick cotton for a day.

JD Anderson said...

I agree, college students don't protest or stand for anything nowdays. Their selfishness comes from not having a struggle and no great leader. The only one that comes close to a modern day MLK is Baraka. It is imperative that we as parents try to stimulate some kind of social consciousness. Being a mother of teenage girls, I underdstand the pitfalls. They can sing every rap song word for word but complain its not fair that their Problem of Democracy teacher gives them alot of work. I explain to them they need to pay attention and know your history, for it repeats itself and you need to have that knowledge so that you will be prepared for your future. I also agree with the last anonymous writer, students are lazy but it's not entirely their fault. Media has a big part in the fault game. I am a fan of wrap but we need to bring our social aware one to the forefront and let them rap about it. Give them as much homework as you can stand, set the bar high. If they believe they will achieve it, then maybe they can stand.

Anonymous said...

The only way you'll ever know what college students are really thinking is to visit the campus and talk to them, read their newspapers. You won't find the kind of provacative radio conversations happening on hbcu college radio stations as you might on other campuses because most hbcu radio stations are not run by students.

db

BeKinky_Paula said...

None of my Professors had us singing or rapping assignments. Don't know what colleges that person commenting have been looking at.

And we have spoken out against issues across the country and across the world. Stuff just isn't publicized if there isn't a good dramatic story. When I organized (of course not alone) the trip to Jena (way before it became a bandwagon idea and people didnt know the facts and the purpose for going there lol) the news only would report the story if they could connect it to my Aunt, Rosa Parks. Being able to say her niece was going down there. And in my opinion, that had nothing to do with the story so it did not get covered. Nowadays, you dont get coverage unless there's something entertaining included. Back then it was groundbreaking and now it isn't. Back then Black people supported one another. Now, when you are like that you are ostracized for being too "militant" or "afrocentric"...I've been called it all...including crazy. It's a lot more complicated than it used to be.

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