A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
Why is it when someone calls me ‘the eternal student’ I feel it was intended as a sophisticated insult, disguised as romantic flattery? In a world in which more and more young people are very highly educated, it seems that less and less is thought of being educated. I have recently been considering enrolling for a second masters but the vindictive and insistent voices of society have been whining at the back of my head; ‘you’re too old!’ and ‘get a job!’ Society can be cruel.
Well I intend to address both these issues. Firstly, age is a mere concept. Since the modern creation of ‘childhood,’ youth has lasted longer and longer. Why on earth would a person wish it to end? Youth ends when responsibility is accepted and with a job comes many responsibilities. With studies, the responsibility is entirely your own. If you want to fail that exam, that is your choice, but it affects no one else. The average age of The Leidener bloggers is around twenty five, so being in your mid-twenties is certainly no obstacle to continuing your studies. As I said, age is a concept, define it how you will. You will spend the rest of your life working, so what’s another year of studying?
Secondly, society demands that you get a job. Studying is seen as ‘messing around.’ I won’t deny that the life of a student is fun, but why should I? Why should anyone feel guilty for enjoying life without the burden of such afore-mentioned responsibility? Furthermore, though society demands we find employment, most graduates are going to encounter extreme difficulty doing so. We are currently experiencing issues not seen since the nineteen eighties and it seems unlikely that youth unemployment will improve much in the near future. Yet another year of studying may even improve your chances, particularly if you go for a more vocational course, which is what I myself am considering.
So if you are wondering if this is the right course for you I say it is. Let’s make the title of ‘The Eternal Student’ an accolade, rather than an insult.