Happy new academic year [Archives:2004/774/Education]

September 20 2004

By Ramzi al-Absi
Yemen Times Staff

As the universities and schools are opening their doors welcoming learners and announcing the beginning of a new academic year, I seize the opportunity to communicate with all the students throughout this issue of the Yemen Times. This new beginning is crucial in so far as it opens the promises and possibilities embedded in a new academic year; it is the first line to be drawn on a new board. So, everyone should carefully decide upon the agenda of action, strategize how to start and how much ground to cover and why. The outcome of this timely resolution will be far reaching. It would lead to either success or failure. We need not brood over the past failings but reflect upon how to rectify them and how to reinforce the previous successful steps. What matters most for us is to strive for excellence and to achieve more than what has been accomplished. It is a basic human instinct that is rooted in every heart and mind. This goal, of striving to be better, is not achievable if taken casually nor if it is left to chance. On the contrary, to achieve the desirable end, we should take good care of the beginning. What we should do then is to pay our best attention to the following guidelines which are very often offered by academics, teachers, and experts:
– Make your own schedule dividing your time proportionally with your daily duties.
– Believe in the necessity of taking down notes as the lecture is being delivered.
– Keep on attending your classes, don't look down on any subject or piece of information you study.
– Do not overlook assignments and tasks asked by your teacher
– Ask your teachers anything you don't understand for they have the answers.
– You are now in a higher grade than you were last year: there should be a difference then; this difference should go arm in arm with your behavior.
– Discuss any you face with the students of the higher levels, they'll undoubtedly offer a hand of help.
– Revise and study lessons with your classmates to get a better grasp of the points.
– Do believe that the scope of your study is not just limited to a book or a hand-out; in fact, you can find many relevant supporting material in various informational resources.
– Participate in extra-curricula activities, you'll be refreshed.
– Do not ignore someone's serious inquiries. Remember, you learn something while explaining points; help others to be helped.
– Do not feel self-conceited at your achievements.
– Deal with your teachers as well as your classmates in a polite and friendly manner.
– Do remember that “as you sow, you reap” and “who plants thorns doesn't mow grapes”.

Eventually, let's make “bringing about a meaningful change” our paramount goal and let's celebrate the auspicious beginning of the new year with Doreen Ellis who says:

Just once a year at the midnight hour,
As we listen to the bells on the top of the tower
Some reminisce and are giving much thought
To all of the blessings the old year has brought.
Some there are planning, through faith and prayer,
Just how, with others, they want to share
Some of the good with which they were blest,
Seeking to know and to do what is best.
Now, New Year's Day we all will observe
And make it special – it does deserve
Its rightful time and recognition,
For it has become a great tradition.
But whatever the day or whatever the hour
To begin a new year – we are given the power
To make a fresh start – on a brand new page
Of the “Book of Life” whatever our age.
Make resolutions, be freed from the past,
Plan a bright future with new goals that last.
Let's pay attention and let us remember –
We need not wait till the end of December.