Opinion: Have pride in your school

Ryan Sampson

Ryan Sampson

Ryan Sampson is a senior architecture major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].

I am not an overly perky person. I’m not a bubbly sentimentalist. I am a self-diagnosed cynic, but this past Saturday, I was very moved by my boss’s passion for this school and his knowledge of Kent’s history. He even spoke of our sports teams with reverence.

Recently, my best friend from home posted on my Facebook wall the ESPN clip of Andre Parker running in the wrong direction during the football game against Towson. Now, while this is not about that incident, I would like to say that I walked into a wall today, so personally, I’m not holding anything against him. My point is not to further berate Parker, but to emphasize my awe towards my boss’s conviction, even after something like that.

But he’s right. Please keep in mind that even with a less-than-stellar football team, newly imposed fees for additional credit hours and some facilities that could use some work, you, for one reason or another, chose to come here. So be proud of your school.

Focus instead on our nationally recognized academic programs, the current renovations of our residence halls and academic buildings or whatever inspired you to attend Kent State. Our university is growing steadily, becoming more respectable with each new freshman class or physical alteration, but those things can only carry it so far. What Kent State needs is a student body filled with individuals excited to be Golden Flashes.

During the baseball team’s past season, culminating in a chance at the College World Series title in Omaha, Neb., there was such an outpouring of support and pride for our school. Where is that now?

I’m not suggesting that you be obnoxious; please don’t take this too far. What I am suggesting is for you to be supportive of our athletic teams and partake in events that showcase local talent, such as the visiting artwork displayed in the art building or watching the plays that our theater department performs. Go see a movie in the Kiva on the weekends. Something. Anything.

Prestigious professors, highly-regarded academic programs and cosmetic changes such as the new green space replacing the old green space in front of the student center are not the most important elements of Kent State’s public image. Prospective students take other things into account.

While all of these things help, it is alumni and current students’ opinions that could be the most influential thing for someone considering Kent State for his or her higher education experience. How could a prospective student have any faith in a school if those currently attending it don’t?

Most importantly, have pride in Kent State for yourself. If you are excited to be here, your experience will be so much more enjoyable. You will look forward to being on campus, spending more weekends here, participating in more events, getting involved and meeting new people. There are so many reasons to be excited about our university, so what are you waiting for?