The power of speakers on campus


Yesterday afternoon I attended a forum with Martin Luther King III where students had the chance to ask the activist questions.
 During the conversations, I realized how little I think about my possible contribution to society, beyond a job.
So often DePauw chases us with how to get an internship, make connections, and make the most of the summer that we get caught up in the money making part of the future.
It's easy to forget there's more to life after college than jobs or graduate school.
Getting to hear Martin Luther King III made me think about what young adults can do beyond the career world. The chance to hear a man dedicated to making change in the country and the world lets us consider about the possibility of making positive changes ourselves.
The speakers that come to campus tell us about more than just their personal lives and ideologies. Most of the speakers tell us how to live successful and fulfilling lives, and what life is like outside of the work world.
People like King and Jane Goodall have such stories to tell, and the lessons college students can gain from their knowledge are incredibly valuable.
At the forum, someone asked about methods that could be used for change. King's answer focused on peacefully enacting change and how the technology of today could be such a call for action.
He continued to press how important working together is to make positive change, calling on communities to knit together and create a stable base before moving forward.
King proved that there are ideas out there to be used, and things that can be done. Recognizing the problem and then educating people about it are important first steps, but acting and negotiating for solutions are what create visible, positive differences.
While King focused a lot on not-so-visible areas that need change, including the need to educate on class and race in America, once we leave DePauw and "enter" the world, problems in America will sometimes hit us in the face.
If we're prepared with the tools necessary to do something about those issues, then it is indeed possible for young adults to make change.
While we come to college to take classes, study and perfect our writing, speaking and analytical skills, we also come for those life skills DePauw's always stressing - those "out of classroom" experiences. We can learn so much from people who have been there and who have done incredible things in the world, whether they're King or an alumnus or an alumna with a successful story to share.
The advice people like King give us makes what we learn in classroom settings worthwhile. DePauw's speakers give students motivation to make use of what is learned in class and apply it towards whatever goals they may have for the future.
And when those goals help solve major problems, then our college education has been fully put to good use.

-- Sausser is a sophomore English Writing major from Indianapolis, Ind.