The opinions page of The Hatchet rarely gives the University a break.
But the Thanksgiving season is upon us, and it just so happens to be one of my favorite holidays – not because I really like the change of seasons or because my mother makes an exceptionally good turkey dinner.
It’s because Thanksgiving is the one time of the year when we can take a break from the hectic nature of life and appreciate the things we care about most. So I will defect from the typical opinions page critiques to dedicate this column to the things about our University that I think we can all be grateful for – even if that means being grateful for some faults.
First, to the administration: Thank you for not being perfect. At every turn, there is another reason not to like this place. Whether it’s a brilliant adjunct professor who knows everything – except for how to teach – or the University’s bureaucratic system that hinders well-intended employees from being good at their jobs, GW definitely has its faults.
I guess, after all, this is a good life lesson. When we graduate and enter the real world, a lot is going to suck. Many of us will join the work force and be a part of major corporations that will be rich with hierarchy and red tape. And it’ll be on our shoulders to fix it.
At least most of us will have had four years of dealing with administration – along with its imperfections and oversights – to know how to best be engaged and positively make changes.
To the student body: Thanks for being weird. We truly are something unique. If we ever looked up from our BlackBerrys we might see just how diverse our student body is.
Few students at GW are from the District, so the student body is comprised of people from all 50 states and numerous other countries. And every student brings a story – and his or her own quirks – to campus. Whether it’s a Midwestern freshman teaching her roommate what “pop” is, or a fratstar upperclassman explaining to his hipster classmate why V-necks and cargo shorts are unacceptable, this student body is pretty weird.
But we are weird in the best way possible, weird in the way that we’re all different from one another, and that’s what makes it work. After all, when we venture through life, not everyone will look the same as us or appreciate the same things as we do. The student body here is preparing us for all the strange people we’ll meet down the road.
To the community: Thanks for having a “sorry I’m not sorry” attitude. We live in the hustle and bustle of a great American city. Our weekends are packed with some of the hottest clubs and best museums a student could ask for.
And you better believe the community takes advantage of it every minute. We’re loud, we can be a little obnoxious and sure, we take over the city at times. But we’re not about to apologize for that, because we’re young and we’re thirsty for new experiences.
And we feel the need to tell everyone in the city, from the D.C. natives to the young professionals in Dupont Circle to the tourists looking for the Foggy Bottom Metro stop.
So thanks for all you do, GW. But I’ll be honest, while my mother’s turkey dinner may not be that great, it’s a hell of a lot better than J Street. So the only thing I care about right now is that.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.
Keith Osentoski, a junior majoring in political communication, is a Hatchet columnist.
This article appeared in the November 21, 2011 issue of the Hatchet.