First Generation Students and the Community College Essay
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Ethnography EssayMy experience with people outside the school as well as inside the school has earned me the nickname “experience” amongst most of my friends. As a strong-minded student with a growth outlook, caretaker individuality, and high value in the community, I flourish in relationships with people as well as the experience I have gained in the school. I am constantly trying to be an example of those who are experienced love to those around me. This drive to improve my relationship with the school fraternity, as well as the outside community, has sent me in many different directions through several kinds of school activities and volunteer opportunities.
I think I inherited my caretaking boldness from my godmother. My godmother has worked with several students for the past twenty years and finds great joy and purpose in these relationships. Centered on his passion, I am supposing the adult students in this school and others as well will be genuinely invested in their friends and community like my godmother. I have also experienced this devotion to caring in the leaders of one of my favorite activities either in the school environment and the home or outside school communities.
Activities unique to my college such as the involvement in sports as well as the interactions with other schools and motivations from the school authorities is an opportunity to form relationships among students in our building with special adaptability to the changing life both in school and the outside communities. The long periods of staying outside the school prepare the adult students to deal with different challenges either mental or educational due to their experience with different scenarios or cases. Through actions like playing, word exchanges, and debates, we create bonds with all students outside of our mainstream educational experience. When I first joined school some years ago, I was initially intimidated by the activities of my friends. I felt my usual confidence slip into a “store mode,” a feeling awkwardness in conversation and uncomfortable with silence. Conversely, after spending more time doing activities with these students, I’ve discovered their valuable hearts. Each student is welcoming and outwardly caring towards myself and the school staff, as well as the community, are privileged to have them. The adult students I am aware of in the school are very honest with little to no filter. They speak their minds without thinking twice, allowing for a truly unvarnished relationship. Based on these experiences, I am expecting the all the adult students, to be honest, and welcoming, and for our interactions to become natural with time. Through conversation with some of the adult students, I’ve heard plenty of talk on several ideas as well as what they need for the comfort both inside the school as well as outside the school. I know adaptability and experience in school include both respect to the authorities and an accepted mode of behavior which must go hand in hand with the right morals and friendship. Luckily, I found out my friends, one of the adult students studying in this institution who have demonstrated a sense adaptability to many activities in life inside and outside the school. As eager as I am to understand how the long stay outside the school and the experience to come back to the learning institution feels, I am also curious to see how it impacts their psychological life through their interaction with the several challenges in life as well as their experience with other students.
Over the years, the education system in many countries has been modified to suit the learning requirements of people in all age groups. This is due to the increased rate of adults with the increased desire to enhance their knowledge through education. This process has enabled many adults to embark in the search for programs which offer educational opportunities to people who are elder than the required age group which is stipulated to be at different educational levels in the academic system of a given country (Espie, Rod, & Josie, 4). Therefore, to adapt to the learning environments at different levels of education, there is the need for those who are willing to return to school after years to prepare themselves both psychologically and emotionally in order to suit in the system. This will ensure that they develop characteristics and behaviors which enhance their relations with other students in the educational facility and that the system will not compromise their time and beliefs in the process of acquiring the kind of education they desire.
Adult students are normally encountered by different challenges due to the beliefs they have as well as the psychological challenges they face as a result of the difference of their age accompanied by the misconceptions accompanied with adult education (Nahas et al, 43). Adults who desire to return to school normally think that they are too old to attend school. This myth discourages most adults with the motivation to acquire knowledge at an advanced age thereby leading to the individuals relent from the idea of returning to school. Other people believe that it is too late for them to acquire education. This discourages many people to return to school thinking that it is too late for them to reap the benefits of the education at an elderly age (Espie, Rod, and Josie, 5). They believe that by the time they are done with acquiring education there will be no opportunities for them. The adult students are also challenged by the way they can strike the balance between the time they are going to be in school, work as well as the time to be with their families.
Therefore, to ensure that the educational system does not compromise the behavior of the adult students at the school as well as their actives which they undertake out of school, a special program needs to be implemented in order to accommodate all kinds of adult students (Espie, Rod, and Josie, 2). This will ensure that the system increases the self-esteem among the adult students and ensure that they do not feel discouraged in the process. This system should ensure that it entails reasonable goals which are attainable to ensure that the students are motivated all through the curriculum (Nahas et al, 42). The process of attainment of the goals should be easy to follow and understandable. Continuous feedback should be enhanced so as to ensure that the students are continuously guided on how to undertake different activities. This will ensure that the errors made by the students are easily corrected by offering explanations and demonstrations in case of technical activities. The learning strategy should involve appropriate evaluation processes which are goal oriented in order to enable the students to evaluate themselves as well as check their progress in the education system (McGrath, 110). Finally, the education system should provide incentives and undertake activities which enhance motivation to the students. This may include activities which are interesting to the students in order to enhance their memory capacity as well as make them enjoy being in the system thus increasing their motivation to continue learning.
The entrance to the school is only attained after navigating through the windy roads and numerous “adult education poster” signs. The entrance provides a learning enabling environment that is supported by the cooling collection of green trees. The environment provides a wonderful and a thrilling interest for anyone to feel the need to learn and achieve their goals in life. The compound of the school is surrounded by different photos that give a hint to every visitor that the place is a learning institution. The walls of the classrooms are lined with motivational posters, such as one stating with different messages; some indicating happy moments and others providing serious information of learning and praises to the school and the learning system as well. I did not expect a large, bare ground of prairie grasses next to me in an institution slopped down in the center. As I alighted the car, I walked onto freshly flagged tar which had clean, white space lines tinted on it. Walking in the direction of the school, I started noticing how quiet the institution grounds could make me feel as I looked at the freshly transplanted prairie grass plan-out swing softly by the influence of the wind. This stunned me, bearing in mind I may not habitually feel that calmness upon arriving in an archetypal institution because of the noise originating from the students playing at bay. Then it happened to me that there were adult students making plays on a huge, exciting playfield alongside the school, although the status of anarchy originating from it was low. I later came to comprehension that calmer than the majority of city schools and was well-funded because of the costly concourse facilities.
The first adult student to interview was a gentleman who appeared very happy and composed as he answered various questions from me. He said that it is better for him to be at school at this time than he would have been some years back as a younger student. Further, the student mentioned that he was feeling more confident because it was his personal choice to learn at this time. The fact that learning at an adult age is through volunteering, is crucial in allowing adults strongly involve themselves in the learning process because they need they are highly motivated. The personal decision to attend the learning institution is a major drive for the student to learn as well as feel comfortable in learning different thought-provoking approaches to life. I learned that the fact the adult students have stayed for long days is an advantage for them to use their abilities to learn to link their experience with any new challenge. The student also said that there is a feeling of self-direction which makes the adults students have a good control of their learning. The control and monitory of their progress in learning involve self-assessment as well as the good relationship with the instructors and other students or the outside community. He further said that the students may be reluctant to change due to a feeling that they are mature and experienced. Slower learning was also evident through more intensive than before. Due to many responsibilities that adult students need a good amount of personal life which makes them busy in many hours of their time. The responsibilities and interactions with different communities as well as individuals allow the adult students to adapt to life in the learning institutions and elsewhere.
It had been some minutes as I stood at a window of a class observing how Susan was interacting with the other young students during as they were being taught. Everyone seemed cool to see her busy listening to the tutor as the lesson went by. Everybody seemed busy in the class all trying their best to understand the concept being taught by the teacher. From time to time, the teacher would ask the students randomly and answers were provided and the teacher would continue with the teaching. When it came to the turn for Susan to answer the given question was asked by the tutor, the other students would look at her and listen keenly if she would make any errors in the process of providing an answer to the question asked. When she made an error in answering the question, the other students would laugh at her. The teacher would then maintain order to the class and then elaborate the solution to the problem asked and ensure that Susan has understood the concept in question then proceed to the next concept.
During break time I met with Susan to understand how she feels in the learning environment where she was different from the majority of her colleagues. “It is fun to be around this place”, she answered with a smile on her face. “I feel great when I undergo different challenges in the process of learning. It makes me feel proud because it is a great opportunity for someone like me to acquire the knowledge required to survive in this in this environment with a lot of learned people.” Happiness could be seen on her face. She seemed adapted to the environment and she was determined to learn at all costs no matter the challenges involved in the process. On the question of how she viewed the teaching system in the institution, she was satisfied with the procedure. “The teachers are cool, they treat all the students equally and are keen to ensure that everyone has understood the concept taught”, Susan stated. The environment was cool to her and she was not bothered by the way other students viewed her.
I was greatly concerned about how Susan was able to balance her time concerning her daily routines as well as her income-generating activities. I was eager to know how she was able to maintain her tight schedule during the day. “It requires a lot of dedication to achieve a given goal”‘ she claimed, ” I normally plan all the activities that I am doing the following day in advance to ensure that no activity will collide with another.” She added that she undertakes part-time jobs which she undertakes after school so as to support herself financially. Susan claimed that the support she gets from her family and friends is what keeps her moving. The determination she had in acquiring the knowledge enabled her to focus on the learning process. “I made up my mind long before I decided to come back to school, I believe it is through education that I will be able to improve my living standards”, she concluded as I eagerly listened to why she was so determined to learn. I was excited by the way Susan was able to merge her family life, work as well as find time to undertake her education program which was somehow demanding. This enabled me to understand the different challenges faced by adult students and how they managed to push through such a challenging environment in the search for knowledge and skills.
Although some people may view adult students as an inefficient and a struggling way to learn, the adult students have a good chance to learn and achieve several objectives due to the facts that they are highly motivated. The adult students have taught me the need of having motivation, teamwork, compassion, slowing down, and being intentional in relationships. The adult students have a high chance of succeeding and engaging in learning more than normal students because of their duty and responsibility to spread kindness and knowledge through their own lives and the lives of those around them. As the adult students have treated me, their actions are indicative of their good behavior and evidence of success in their education and adaptability as well as experience in life. After spending some time in studying the adult students sub-culture, I have learned that I have some similarities with some of the practices in that culture such as the ability to access oneself and plan for one progress. I always have a means of evaluating my progress towards the achievement of my objectives and take responsibility for ensuring I perform everything to my great potential. There are high collaboration and team among the adult students due to their need to succeed I life. As times goes many people will realize the need for the adult education and feel proud to join it.
Espie, Rod, and Josie Viola. “A Place for Political Literacy in Adult Education.” ARIS Resources Bulletin 10.3 (1999): 1-4.
McGrath, Valerie. “Reviewing the Evidence on How Adult Students Learn: An Examination of Knowles’ Model of Andragogy.” Adult Learner: The Irish Journal of Adult and Community Education 99 (2009): 110.
Nahas, Markus V., Bernie Goldfine, and Mitchell A. Collins. “Determinants of physical activity in adolescents and young adults: The basis of high school and college physical education to promote active lifestyles.” Physical Educator 60.1 (2003): 42.