Education is a Privilege (although it shouldn’t be)

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YLI is My Story

My aunt has always been the young, energetic, and resourceful type. Her old computer, unfortunately, was not. I learned this the hard way my junior year of high school, staring in terror and shock as the carefully chosen and researched words I’d typed over the past hour deleted themselves before my very eyes. I couldn’t use that torrid device after that, nor could I afford to buy a new one, which left me without a computer to finish my school assignments.

I, fortunately, had access to a chrome book at school and of course my phone, but these came with their own little inconveniences. For one, it meant I had to make sure to finish any sort of homework involving a computer, at school. That led to many speed-written essays as I raced against the clock in my History class. But some work was assigned specifically to be done at home, so I would have to work on my phone. Let’s just say, Google slides aren’t very mobile-friendly and there was a lot of zooming in and zooming out involved (formatting was a nightmare).

Finishing high school without a computer was very stressful, so as schools transitioned online and programs such as hotspot and chrome book loans surfaced, I was excited. I benefited from a loaned chrome book my senior year and it made a huge difference in work quality and time management. I was finishing assignments quicker. Every student should have access to the technological resources they need to succeed in school. 

Having to work since a very young age, my father didn’t have access to the educational opportunities I have been fortunate enough to be privy to. He instilled in me this love for learning, to take school seriously in order to equip myself with the tools and skills I would need to succeed, to make something of myself. My fondest memories of him include the both of us at our dinner table, illuminated by the dim kitchen light as we attempted to decipher fractions. He’s much better at math than me which I appreciated. Each report card season he would beam as he saw my grades and would proudly show them off to my grandparents.  He went to every open house, award ceremony, and parent-teacher conference, always letting me know how proud he was of me.

My dad views education as a tool to overcome our current social and financial situation. He wants me to get a degree, get a high-paying job I enjoy and be able to live comfortably, without having to worry about the things he has had to worry about all his life. The importance my father put on education led me to be acutely aware of not only the assets of the education system but also its flaws. I want to be an educator in an attempt to tackle these issues and ensure a quality education for everyone.