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Be Involved. Be Orange.

Posted March 27th, 2014 by yelasj

Submitted by Jyssica Yelas

PHL 205 get involved image

When applying to colleges, students often apply to the schools that have the best programs in his or her chosen course of study. How desirable it is to be thoroughly knowledgeable on a subject or field –to have been involved in one’s studies so deeply that all subjects taught in school were learned and understood. This is a level of involvement that, I have discovered, must be far surpassed in order to be successful at Oregon State University, and beyond. It is not purely interest in one’s major that will create fulfillment –it is a deeper involvement, with other students, with subjects of alternative interest; it is involvement with community at large, and even with oneself that creates a truly informed, rounded scholar.

To be “involved” in this sense is to ponder and act deeper than is expected. This requires curiosity as well as mindfulness in learning. This term I have practiced exercising mindfulness through a series of yoga practices that, with the help of class discussions, have helped me be a more involved learner. This means I am listening with an opened and broadened mind that allows me to see where everything I am experiencing personally and learning about in school intermingles. By being involved in my own learning, I am not merely a ‘sponge’ in a classroom–a scenario that deters students from seeing value in attending class.

I am learning more about myself because of my involved learning. Through my ethics class this term, I have discovered that I am developing quite a utilitarian approach to ethics. Thus, being involved helps me know myself better, which allows me to treat others better. Maintaining and feeding curiosity throughout this journey is both healthy and promotes ethical behavior. When one is interested in matters outside their own usual interests, and genuinely thirsts to understand ulterior perspectives and experiences, room for appreciation of others expands. The ability to openly receive others’ ideas and find common ground comes from this very kind of involvement. It requires exposure to worlds outside one’s own, which allows for a more informed and compassionate decision-making.

To be Orange is to well represent Oregon State University –a responsibility possibly unasked for, possibly underestimated, but one that presents itself the moment one accepts to become a part of the OSU community, whether a student, professor, or anyone in between. The Orange community is made of millions of individual acts of involvement of all sorts. As I further my friend and interest circles at OSU, I start to see links between different friends or acquaintances of mine. He knows her through the Anactist Club; he knows him from anchoring at KBVR TV; she met him at the basketball game in the student section. These networks and relationships that tend to be so fulfilling and productive build between conversations between all kinds of students who are involved and interested –and everyone does it differently. As afore mentioned, a member of the Orange community can practice involvement anywhere from the classroom, to a conversation in the bathroom, to a friendly exchange of smiles whilst on a run down Monroe street. That’s the beauty of it. To be Orange is to be involved –to be engaged, however one chooses to be. I once saw a bumper sticker that read, “The world is run by those who show up.” This has been my inspiration this year, and it explains exactly why there exist so many successful and continuously involved Beaver alumni and students.

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One Response to “Be Involved. Be Orange.”

  1. bulloccl Says:

    I think that it is very interesting to see how you have developed a sense of community since you have come to OSU. Building the community from the bottom-up is the only way that progress will be made, and it is great to see that you are a contributing member of the OSU community. It is also interesting to see how your have developed as a person from being a member of OSU.

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