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I grew up in a household that values education. Not just any education- a Fairfield education.

It’s safe to say that I’m a super legacy at Fairfield. Those who came before me include my grandmother, both my parents, and my aunt. For my whole life, my parents saved their money in hopes of being able to provide me with an education that compares to the one they both received. Their oppurtunites set them up for many success later in life. From a young age, listening to them reflect on their experiences here, I knew that they experienced something incredibly special during their time at school.

This something special was their Jesuit education, which requires students to take an extensive number of core classes. The goal of the core is to educate the “whole person”- to make us well rounded citizens upon graduation, beyond just being knowledgeable in our majors. The core is designed to help you find the best in yourself, to stretch your mind beyond what it is used to, and to educate you comprehensively and in a unique way that so many students do not experience.

For many of us, this means that we find ourselves occasionally cursing at our religion homework when we have to study for a test in our major. Sometimes it means we have to take a class or two we don’t initially want to take, or we think that we have little interest in. However, I implore those who doubt its importance to be a bit more open minded, and perhaps you will find that the core really is worth your time.

Through the core, Fairfield is trying to educate us for the real world- not just the professional world. Many situations in your professional or personal life that you will face, whether an accounting major, a journalism major or an art history major, will require you think outside of the box. Look closely and you’ll notice that all of these core classes require some degree of critical thinking- a skill that we can carry forward no matter what field we enter.

In addition, core classes demand that you think in ways that you’re not used to and this can be incredibly challenging- especially if you are a math person trying to navigate your way through English class, or vice versa . At the time, the challenge might seem tedious and unnecessary, but that doesn’t mean that we should give up. If we let our disinterest in these subjects turn to apathy, we are wasting an education we are so lucky to be receiving. Besides, giving up on something that you’re not naturally good at is the easy way out, and I believe most of my fellow Stags are much better than that.

Furthermore, optimistic students may find, to their surprise, that they actually enjoy religion, philosophy or art. Although I’m and accounting/international business major, I find my religion class this semester to be refreshing and intriguing. Art class is helping me develop drawing skills I have always wished to have. I wrote papers in my freshman English classes that I loved to write and plan on keeping forever.

So maybe I’m the only one, but I appreciate the core, and I believe that the Fairfield education is special – and most definitely worth the money. This may be hard to realize now when you are trying to learn philosophy and science all at once, but in the future you will see that the core intends to make you best version of yourself. I believe that we are lucky to be educated in such a diverse, dynamic, and thorough way. If you would like to take 23 classes in your major, you should take your money elsewhere and pay for the education that you value..

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