Harder Education

It is difficult for me to decide how to comment on Julie Scelfo’s article addressing the issue of suicide in post-secondary education.

The facts are devastating.

According to Scelfo  the average suicide rate for both genders among 15-24-year-olds was 11.1 deaths per 100,000 in 2013.

I was more shocked to read in the comments of the suicide rate among American Indian/Alaska Native populations of young people.

The CDC calculated  9.4 deaths per 100,000 among AI/AN females and an astounding 29.1 deaths per 100,000 AI/AN males.

This issue is so complicated.  Are the conflicts faced by those minority populations addressed in this article?

It seems that the answer is no.  The article discusses the concerns of the prevalence of suicide on Ivy League campuses and specifically addresses the ever-increasing demands of success in those realms of higher education.  Scelfo focuses on two young women at Penn State.

Yet for me the wider questions of an existential nature unify these diverse populations.

Many struggle to answer these types of questions and it is critical that young people learn the lessons of failure and perseverance.

Failure is typically a better teacher than success.

I found learning about the successes of others through perseverance important.

I love this article about Thomas Edison from  Time.  It describes his determination and helps clarify some common myths surrounding the man.  (Bonus: It also details his amusing sleep habits)

Time states that Edison’s crew at his “invention factory” tried to find the correct material for the light bulb filament over 6,000 times before they found what they were looking for.

His response to his repeated failures?

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that will not work.”

First Light Bulb

Welgos / Getty Images

-Still life of the first electric light bulb, invented by Thomas Alva Edison in 1879 and patented on January 27, 1880.



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