So, being the young adult/teenager that I am often troubled or thrown into contemplation about some life’s issues. A motto I have is that “If you don’t get depressed after thinking about something, you’re not thinking hard enough.” But even I find that too downcast and pessimistic sometimes. Although the long-term may sometimes seem bleak, the short-term is where the joy in life truly lies.

– Difficulty of getting into college
So, the ordeal of getting into college is vastly different that what it once was. I believe that I read that in the past, a 3.8 GPA and a upper SAT was enough to get a spot at Harvard. But, of course, that’s not the case anymore.

Currently, there is a phenomenon in the admissions process, ‘shotgunning”. More and more people are applying to more and more colleges. This is a tragedy that will only continue to get worse. The basis is that as college acceptance rates keep decreasing, students are forced to keep applying to more colleges in hopes of being accepted. Primarily out of the fear that they’ll be rejected by all of their applications and forced into community college. This only makes the situation worse because now, there’s even more applications than ever.

Since everyone is applying to schools, it only perpetuates the issue of further decreasing acceptance rates and increased competitivity. The universities, themselves, don’t feel the need to stop this cycle because of two reasons. First, they get to reap the rewards from the application fees that they charge (Sometimes it costs $90 for one application). Secondly, the increased number of applicants doesn’t mean more acceptances. No, it only means more rejections and a lower acceptance rate (Which looks good for prestige).

– Degree Inflation
Honestly, it seems like everyone and their mothers are going to college. This will only be getting worse as time goes by. With the general trend of things, degrees will become more and more common. The job market is becoming saturated with higher and higher degrees. Now, associate degrees are no longer significant as they once were. It’s already getting to the point of where bachelors are beginning to become obsolete in attaining an entry-level job.

It all comes down to experience. Almost all jobs at the “entry-level” are requiring at least a couple years of experience, something hardly possible when you went to college the past few years. Truthfully, in essence, these job offerings are not entry-level at all. Rather, it’s just a ploy to pay beginning mid-level worker a lower wage. Anyhow, back to the pressing problem. This leaves only a few options to getting a good start on a degree-related career.

First, is through connections. This can be either through family (if you’re not rich, good luck), professors, or just the strength of the college. The last one depends heavily on the university program you get into. Example, for Engineering it’s MIT and Caltech; for Business it’s Wharton, Harvard, Kellogg, Stern, and etc; for Law it’s Yale. And the list goes on. But, the importance of schools outside of these titan-level beings is rather negligible.

The second is through internships. Again, if you have some connections, it’s quite easy to get internships. I’ve read some people’s experiences of interning at JP Morgan or Goldman Sachs in their college summers. However, if you don’t hail from a rich and well-connected family… battling against the swarms of other internship applicants is perhaps the only other option. This is your true purpose at college. Get internships. A good and meaningful internship is perhaps much more relevant than a simple degree.

False Love
There is a part of love that I despise, the false love. The type of love that has been in used since antiquity. Sun Tzu mentions it in the Art of War and has led to the downfall of kings and nations. I dislike seduction. Rather, I loathe it. To me, false love is akin to sacrilege. In ancient times, this was predominately used as a means to ensnare men of meaningful positions. In the modern era, men have also become the perpetrators. I despise this equally if not more so.

A question I’ve always been pondering is if ambition is good. And more specifically, how already successful people view ambition in others. For there are two arguments both for and against it. An ambitious person not good for a company because it does not adhere to a stable job. They may try to do too much or expect too much. Or perhaps they may leave and the company is forced to re-hire and re-train. However, another approach that I can predict is that ambitious persons will be valued for their drive and pursuit.

I believe in a basic formula. Ambition + Talent = Success. Talent is vital as if there is no capability to achieve anything and all there is foolish ambition then nothing will ever be accomplished. Similarly, ambition is vital in that it is what drives someone forward. There have been plenty of people with IQs higher than say, Einstein. However, few of them really amount to much. Simply because they don’t have the ambition to find a solution.

However, this is not to say there is no possibility for success. Granted, you cannot make talent. However, there will always be something that you are more talented at than others. All that needs to be done is to nurture that and you can be exceptional. Same thing with ambition. Once you find your talent, find a goal that will constantly drive you forward. Find a reason to achieve that goal.

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