Inner Dialogue 2015.06.30
“No Strings on Me”
As of current, I am basically 90% done with the requirements of this program, moreover, the intensity of the semester has been settling down, especially since I already received the final grades from the Nanjing classes, therefore, I only need to receive the Flagship grades. I am extremely silly happy that this semester is over, the nightmare of academic torture will soon subside! At the same time, I believe I learned quite a lot of things during this semester, a lot on my own through introspection and deep concentration of thought and reflection than the courses themselves, specifically, the Nanjing courses, they were almost completely useless to my language learning. I am extremely thankful to get out of the rigid concrete walls of education. The strings are finally cut off.
Rebel. Initiative. Ownership
As a result, In my spare time, I hacked my own education by hopping over China’s wall of information restriction (via Express VPN) and self-taught myself other various thoughts of knowledge and skills such as Japanese, history, economics, business, politics, and philosophy, etc. I found that I learned so much more through the educational videos provided by Youtube, Ted-talks, Sohu, etc than any of my classes. Originally, I wanted to go to graduate school, but now I am more on the lines of: “Why the *_+&^% would I want to pay tens of thousands of dollars for an education that I can get for free? Or with little to no cost?” Ultimately, learning is dependent upon one’s own volition to choose to be educated and the sheer willpower to get things down. I am in control of learning.
I am estimating that the internship portion of this program would be much more beneficial in providing the students with more practical knowledge and skills. I will be blunt and honest about the courses I have taken this semester: I won’t even have the chance to say goodbye to the knowledge I have “learned”, since they will naturally grow wings and fly away. The flaw of formal education is that there are no “real-world risk” in most given circumstances; unless you needed excellent grades to reflect that you possess highly specialized knowledge in medicine or law.
However, when you are studying subjects in aside from the hard sciences, you are actually doing yourself a disservice by paying an institution bloody money for knowledge that you will probably forget shortly after the time you have learned it. What mores, this type of obtained-through-mindless-hard-work-type-of-knowledge in most cases will not merit you a lucrative or affluence outcome. Again, I would like to emphasize that I am not attacking the faculty and staff employed through this program or in any type of educational institution, nevertheless, I am unmistakably attacking the institution of education itself: you are a for-profit business, marketing your product at ignorant young persons, and charging a price-tag that can potentially crush them for life.
But all in all, learning a language in itself is actually more beneficial than the pumping of useless knowledge into your brain. At least with language, every word you mastered or acquired becomes a powerful tool in creating and causing effect into the physical world. This is the best outcome of the program. But then again, it depends on the effort produced by the students as to whether they developed and fine-tuned this skill to a profitable level. Hopefully, I am one of those students.
Okay. Rant is over. Enjoy these pictures.
Conclusion to All the Sites Traveled in Nanjing
Mochou Lake (莫愁湖)
Jiming Temple (鸡鸣寺) Xuanwu Lake (玄武湖）
Purple Mountain (紫金山)
Qixia Temple/Mountain (栖霞寺/山)
Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge (南京长江大桥)
*These experiences were made possible by the Gilman Scholarship