The Power of Our Students
From time to time here, I harp on the strategic nature of our role as university educators. Here’s another reason—our students do significant things, therefore, we are in a position to help them do good significant things or counterproductive significant things.
First, why do college students do significant things? They are young and don’t yet “know what they can’t do,” they have the energy to try, and they feel empowered by their newfound independence and awakening (occasionally) of their minds by the challenges we and the college environment present them.
Many of the shakeups in society occur because of college students’ initiative. Tiananmen Square, the 60’s antiwar movement, many revivals, and so on were instigated by or caught fire because of college students. Due to their youth and inexperience, sometimes they pursue their goals in a counterproductive manner, and sometimes their hearts are in the right place but the issues they pounce on could be refined, or are symptomatic rather than root issues. A contemporary example are the various “occupy” movements that famously (or infamously) aren’t entirely sure what they are moving for or against, and do so in a way that tends to be somewhat unruly and troublesome.
However, there are examples of movements that seek to fundamentally challenge unbiblical aspects of our culture such as the “Live 31” movement by freshman Alex Eklund at Baylor. He challenges is female peers to set their standards by Proverbs 31 rather than Victoria’s Secret, and challenges his male peers to seek out such women. Not bad for an 18 year old. See for yourself: