What does being a success at college mean? A straight A report card? A mile long list of extra .curricular activities? No! A successful college student is one who has cultivated the virtue of being a good citizen of his college, his community, his state, his nation, and his world. Four of the most important attributes of a good citizen for the college student to achieve are patience, respect, enthusiasm, and a spiritual/philosophical outlook.
1. Patience is perhaps the hardest attribute to develop.
We must learn that in spite of all efforts things will go completely wrong occasionally. Then there will be the tedious job of redoing what has been done and the unpleasantness of putting up with extra discomforts. Tolerance and diplomacy go hand in hand with patience. There may be some particularly obnoxious person who seems to get on everyone’s nerves. It is easy to join with the crowd and make the person uncomfortable but the truly patient person never does.
2. Respect sometimes follows patience.
We must try to respect the rights of all others. It is easy to respect the rights of those we like but sometimes we have trouble recognizing the rights of those we don’t like. Nevertheless there will be people we like and people we don’t like all through life and to get along well we should respect everyone.
3. Enthusiasm is very important.
If we are enthusiastic about what we believe and what we do we will often inspire others to be enthusiastic too. With enthusiasm we can build up the morale of our fellow classmates and make seemingly impossible tasks easily possible.
4. Having a personal view of religion or spirituality or a philosophy of life helps us to mold these attributes together and enables us to become better citizens in practicing them.
We can have patience, respect and enthusiasm but we need something to organize them and integrate them into acceptable moral codes. When we have a religion or a philosophy of life, we can use our beliefs and practice to bind us to our neighbors and to form a better world.