Today’s college students: similarities and differences

Workout notes swimming only; 2200 yards (2000 meters, or 1.25 miles)
500 warm up
5 x (50 drill with fins, 50 free)
5 x 200 on 4: 3:31, 3:33, 3:27, 3:27, 3:31 (tired out)
100 back, 100 fins (50 fly drill, 50 fly)

Hey, I got it in.

I went to a forum devoted to the search process for a new college president (the current one is retiring). Yes, there is more to this, but that isn’t what I want to focus on.

There were mostly faculty there, along with some staff and a few students.

One student rose to speak: she mentioned that she and her fellow students LOVED the current President “their “Jo-Jo” ” who…well, held office hours to directly listen to their concerns, showed up at student events, and..well..gave them hugs. Yes, I am talking about a college president.

The issue isn’t whether this is the role of a college president. The issue is the student reaction.

When I was an undergraduate, I would have found such behavior by a college president to be, well…sort of creepy. I liked my “higher ups” to keep some distance between me and and them..for the “adults” to be ‘adults”. At student events, I didn’t want to rub elbows with old people! Some informal discussion was fine, but I liked my professors staying professors and older leaders staying leaders.

I am that way now. I might joke in class, but I am NEVER the student’s friend. That isn’t my role.

So, I see this as a genuine generational difference.

On the other hand: some things remain the same.

Example: I am teaching a topology class. On one hand, I have an advantage because I know this stuff inside and out. The disadvantage: I know this stuff inside and out. I found that with a month to go in the semester, inadvertently…I’ve covered almost the entire “small” text book. That is a bit too fast for them as they are beginners. It still takes time for stuff to sink in.

Hence, I’ll be doing a ton of examples the rest of the semester; that is how they learn, just as that is how I learned.

Learning new stuff still takes time.🙂

March 30, 2015 - Posted by | education, swimming |


  1. The bad part about liking a warm and cuddly authority figure is that some students seem to equate that with competence.

    Or they think that all teachers should be like that. My daughter thinks like that and when she’s had a teacher that doesn’t gushingly adore her, she thinks the teacher “hates” her.
    I have tried to convince her that her teachers don’t care enough about her to hate her, but she doesn’t find that reassuring. 🙂

    (IDK how I raised a drama queen Republican feminist activist. Okay, I can see that last part.)

    Comment by jenjw4 | March 30, 2015 | Reply

    • Genes plus social influence from the environment; home life, aside from the genetic inheritance, has surprisingly little to do with it. Source: Pinker: Blank Slate.

      Note: my daughter converted to Catholicism (I was Catholic at that stage in my life) and embraces feminism (which I do not), though her brand of feminism seems a bit more tinged with rationality than many 3’rd wave types.

      Comment by blueollie | March 31, 2015 | Reply

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