Ranking shows that students care...
Senior Communication Major
St. Joseph, Mo.
Somewhere along the way, Truman assembled a beautifully unique and diverse student body. So, instead of praising the administration for this year's "Top Public University in the Midwest" award given out by U.S. News and World Report, I think it's time the students get a little acknowledgement.
Upon coming to Truman, I was told that 80 percent of Truman students were "freakin' weirdos" and the other 20 percent were some of the coolest people I'd ever meet.
Naturally, I focused on the 80 percent. For some reason, "freakin' weirdos" sent me to 1969 Woodstock. I pictured crowds of hippies filling the Quad, marveling at dandelions and puffin' the ganja.
But soon after I got here, my irrational fears began to melt away. I realized the 80/20 stat was much closer to the other way around, and I began to feel a great sense of pride at the opinionated, wacky students who surrounded me.
Now, more than two years since stepping foot on campus as a Trumanite for the first time, I am convinced the students are a huge reason the school continues to receive high accolades.
When you pair high-quality education and affordability, the diversity of students is endless. It certainly shows. There are the devout Christians and the firm atheists, the strong athletes and the lab rats, the humans and the zombies.
It is the Truman students who give teachers so much freedom. Class discussions often turn into heated, informative debates with far more than just two sides. This depth allows teachers to guide conversation rather than make it. And in that setting, everyone learns.
We have phenomenal professors who recently were ranked No. 3 in the Midwest in "Strong Commitment to Teaching" by U.S. News and World Report. But somehow the common restrictive boundaries of, "professor lectures, students learn" has been torn away to reveal a group setting where all present can analyze and interpret information for themselves. The spoon-fed information and notes-like-a-mad-man classes you hear about from other schools are hardly present here.
Consider that there are about 250 student organizations on campus. I constantly hear faculty members talk about how involved Truman students are. To me, this directly points at how much students care about what they are doing.
The average Truman student isn't here merely to maintain a 2.0 GPA and ride off to the real world in four years, degree in hand. We want to be masters of our craft, and it shows when the school's graduate placement is at 99 percent for those reporting post-graduation plans.
Students here simply put their grades first. The Fiske Guide to Colleges once noted that Truman attracts "over-achievers from across the Show-Me State." I can't put it any better myself.
The bottom line is that Truman students care. They care about learning and they care about their futures. And there is just no substitute for genuine, inspired effort.