Can all work hard and succeed?

March 27, 2012

By Olivia Spokoiny

Olivia Spokoiny Skyline High School

“Work hard and you will succeed” is the age-old saying that young children are taught to live by as soon as they start school. But is it really true?

It is and it isn’t. Society’s idea of success is rigid. We are taught to go to school, take hard courses, challenge ourselves, get a job and persevere through life’s inevitable obstacles. After high school, we are expected to go to a four-year college and establish a career path right away. We are told that you can be whatever you want to be as long as you push yourself to the limit.

For some, the pressure becomes a burden that is hard to bear. The truth is, not everybody starts at the same place, and not everybody has to put in the same amount of effort to achieve his or her goals. We are not taught that how much you have and where you come from matters. Whether we like it or not, the system is not entirely equal.

In this day and age, higher education isn’t cheap. The price of college is high and climbing. Without college, it becomes incredibly difficult to get a job and live a comfortable lifestyle. When people lack resources, they view success as something that is almost impossible to attain. It is a vicious cycle, and that is the reason that the system remains unequal.

Society does not tell us that success is not the same for everyone, and that it cannot be so easily defined.

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