By Kenya Hall Popular Culture. Daneen B.
Nowadays society is so judgmental of the 21st century college student. Society often perceives college students as arrogant and lazy fools. We are believed to be drunken, sex driven crazies in the pre stages of alcoholism. But what society doesn’t understand is that we spend four years trying to map out the rest of our lives through education, and although some benders get us through the term here and there, we are much more than our stereotype. When I started college at Portland State University I knew what would be my biggest distraction. The IDEA of college. I thought that college would be this fun social event that everyone did because partying would play a big factor in it I thought that college would be just another life experience. As I continued on with my education I realized that my idea of college isn’t what college is at all. We go to school to invest into our future selves. I was coaxed into the idea of going to college based on the television shows I watched. Being a first generation college student, I had no one to tell me what to expect, my only other resource was watching tv and basing what is a big life decision on fictitious people. In this way, society had encouraged the idea of going to college by portraying it in a way that glorified the young adult experience, instead of showing what college was really like. Because society sees college students in a negative way, they are also shown on tv to be the exact stereotype that we are seen as.
My findings for my primary sources were the television show Greek which aired on Abc Family, The L.A. Complex and the song I Love College made famous by Asher Roth. Being in college I have learned so much about myself, others, and what college life is truly like. Those facebook memes that talk about living on 20 cent ramen, and being broke are definitely part of the college struggle, and if you never experience that part of college then you haven’t had the right college experience. I have learned that I am not super woman, I cant be in more places that one, and I cannot commit to every college related activity that I intended on doing. I have learned that you cannot rely on other people to get your responsibilities done. But I am a student who is trying to work at the best of my abilities. Being a college student can have its ups and downs with finals, midterms and online class work, you never have much time to party, but when the opportunity presents itself, you obviously take it. The unfortunate part about that is that society only focuses on the idea of college students getting drunk and partying and being too hung over to make it to classes, but we work our butts off to get assignments in, in a timely matter.
My first source is the ABC Family show Greek. I feel that most shows or movies that portray college are inaccurate. For instance the movie 22 Jump street show Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill at crazy frat parties and drinking giant gallons of milk while the entire crowd cheers them on. They go to wild spring break parties and football games but no footage of them actually learning something.
College students get judged for their extreme partying, also it gives high school students false hope of what college actually is. In the show Greek it follows a college freshman named Rusty Cartwright as he tries to get through the hustle and bustle of being an outsider in this huge Greek “culture” that his popular sister belongs in.
I think that this show portrays college through the point of view of college freshman because it accurately shows the struggle of college and having to work hard to get where you want to be in life. You see Rusty’s coming of age story as he finds his place In the college world. You see him making many mistakes, and the show doesn’t portray college as rainbows and butterflies, it is the real deal. It goes over obstacles and challenges that every college student faces at some point in their college career.
Another portrayal of college would be the song “I love college” made famous by Asher Roth. Its purpose is to give an idea of how partying in college would be, and although it seems like a cliché this song is pretty accurate for college freshman, its an artifact to me because when I first started college I focused more on partying and not my education, I think that it is definitely something that you grow out of by your senior year. This song accurately describes how society sees college students .
Another show that is more influential to college life/ adulthood is the The L.A. Complex The L.A. Complex is about a girl who, after completing her college career moves to L.A. to look for a job to start her acting career. She moves into a complex with other people trying to make their way into stardom, and they all struggle in their own ways. All thinking that they should be more privileged than the other which describes to each their own “complex” of living in Los Angeles. The audience is people who also struggle with finding work after their undergrad. Its purpose is to show that not everything is at arm’s reach; you have to work for what you want, and I think that once you get into a certain stage In your college career that becomes more of a realistic fact.
Memorable learning experience
My most memorable/favorite learning moment was the advertising lesson. I enjoyed it because there are so many ways to be tricked into mainstream consumerism. Someone could be convincing you that you need something or that you need to do something with subliminal messages that we don’t even notice. I shared a few videos about how smoking is bad with the #truth videos and my point that I was showing was that big marketers target a specific age group and target what they would captivate their interest. The commercials have funny memes and dancing and music, but the message that they are trying to portray is that smoking is bad for your health. Although they are trying to relay an important message, they hide it with funny sayings and music.
Although I think that it is trivial that most marketers are in the same line of persuasion it is also interesting that you can almost coax people to see something without them even seeing the thing that they are supposed to be seeing.
Another memorable learning experience was reading about how the boy in the shoe shop didn’t want to buy a certain type of shoe because he was worried about the child labors and the people who created them, wanting to not contribute to the harsh reality of how a lot of our products are made. That one spoke out to me because someone at that age felt like the things that happen in the world that we live in are so unfair, and especially him being a young adult and having that realization means something. If everyone or at least a majority of the world thought that way, who knows where we would be.