The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Local News

November 30, 2013

College trip reminds of life's potential

Today's kids are driven tobe good, smart

(Continued)

Now, I could sit here and say the fact that we're visiting schools such as Northwestern is because of good parenting. I'd like to be able to say that. And maybe parenting did have something to do with it. But that's not why we're here. We're here because of one kid's hard work.

Emma has a decent shot at getting into an elite school. Why? Because she's one of those kids — and there are a lot of them these days ... is yours one of them? — who works her butt off, studies every night, and chooses to be a leader in extracurricular activities.

If you believe the websites out there that offer college admission prognostication, then you'd believe she's got a better chance than the average applicant. Still, the schools are really selective, and a lot of kids with a lot of ability get rejected every year. It doesn't mean they're not smart or couldn't cut it. They can't take everyone.

I happen to believe she'll get offered admission at one of them, but even if she doesn't, who cares? She's already established herself as someone who isn't afraid to work for what she wants (like the several months she played that All-State music over and over and over again until finally, come audition day, she played well enough to make it.) Which is way, way more than anything I can say for my high school career.

When I was in high school, I didn't look around too much to see what college I wanted to attend. And as far as my extracurricular activities were concerned, well ... I guess there weren't any beyond hockey.

Emma's list, on the other hand, is about as long as my arm, and she's not alone. Kids are involved in so many activities. Whether it's volunteering with the food shelf or going on mission trips with a church, kids these days are doing more than ever.

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