It is worth it to know what you don’t know.
~Professor Covington, Bridgewater College
I might go to college, I just don’t know what I would go for.
~The answer I often get when I ask Mennonite girls if they will go to college
I’m going into the medical field.
~The answer I get when I ask Mennonite girls who are in college/planning to go to college what they are going for
Is there any point in going to college if you are going to be a wife and mother?
~The question we ponder
I love college. I think that it is, unquestionably, worth it to go to college even if you are going to focus on being a wife and mother. Even more daringly, I believe that a woman should go to college even if she has no idea what she should go for.
I believe, as my Professor once said, that it is worth it to know what you don’t know.
Now. Instead of listing the fifty-two and a half reasons why I think women should go to college, I am going to veer off in another direction for a bit.
Please tell me you don’t know this girl:
Her clothes are trendy. She plays volleyball and thinks about boys. In her spare time she takes pictures, goes on facebook, and reads fat Christian romance novels.
She has a job, of course, working at a coffee shop or for another Mennonite. Her money goes towards clothes, coffee, and fat Christian romance novels. Maybe a car, or a guitar. Maybe a trip to Bible School or oversees, to see interesting things and get the tiniest taste of mission work.
I don’t understand what the point of living is if that is all you are going to get from life.
People ask, “Is it necessary to go to college?”
I don’t ask that anymore.
Instead I ask, “Is it necessary to spend your time on Karen Kingsbury, your money on starbucks?
Break for commercial
Quote while I’m writing this blog post:
Me: Mom, how do you spell Kingsbury?
Mom: “Kings” like we three kings, “Bury” like bury a body
The world is big. There is so much to know. If you had time, if you had money, would you spend it on fun or would you spend it on learning? You could learn to speak Spanish. You could learn what aspects of the global warming debate are legitimate and what parts are rubbish. You could learn a hundred, a thousand, a million different things.
I feel like I see Mennonite girls all the time who aren’t sure about college, because they don’t want to be a nurse. Does that sound crazy? Think about it. Think about all the Mennonite women you know who are in college, were in college, or are planning to go to college. How many of them picked nursing, or something else in the medical field?
I think those girls are lucky. They can go to college and do what they love. No one blinks an eyelash. Everyone knows that nursing is a practical thing to do. You can do it on the mission field. You can take care of your child’s medical needs. If you end up unmarried, or a single mother, you can support yourself.
For the rest of us, the ones who aren’t interested in being a nurse, it is harder.
You’re interested in music? Well you can do that without going to college. Art? Teaching? Ditto. What’s the point?
Question: What if you want to go into public relations, theater set design, or archaeology?
Answer: Well, um, I guess I don’t know much about any of those fields….
The thing is, asking someone to choose what they want to be before they’ve done any college at all is like asking someone to choose their absolute favorite kind of cake to eat for the rest of their life when they’ve only eaten three different kinds in their lifetime.
Part of the point of collage is exploring how many amazing opportunities there are in the world which you’ve never though of.
My goal, of course, is not to force/guilt/coerce anyone into going to college. My goal is to show the Mennonite girl that even though no one else is doing it, even though you don’t want to be a nurse, going to college is an immensely feasable and rewarding option.