Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

UA degree not a golden ticket

One of the easiest ways to annoy others is carrying a severe case of unwarranted self-importance or self-delusion. These are the individuals who believe the world owes them and the individuals whose grasp on reality teeters between pathetic and painfully incoherent.

They have the tendency to weasel their GPA into a completely unrelated discussion. They’re models, but their portfolio consists of horrid, high flash, point-and-click pictures in their bathroom near a dirty mirror. They tend to interject their opinion into a conversation whether or not someone has asked.

They’re 36-year-old rappers getting ready to release their next mixtape. They are the kids who have the nerve to complain to a professor about their grade when they have 12 unexcused absences and play Angry Birds during lecture.

The actual substance of their achievements pales in comparison to the delusions they have about themselves. It’s the Mel Kanye Wibson-esque ego without 12 Grammy Awards or two Oscars.

It’s annoying, but the kind of self-importance that irks me the most is the one attached to the name of this school. Freshman year, I had an acquaintance who no longer attends the University. He was a terrible student and a perpetual slacker. Most freshmen are unsure of their career paths, but he didn’t care.

His family was paying for his education, so as long he left UA with something, they would be satisfied. The only semi-positive idea he constantly reminded me of was that, when it was time to get a job, he could fall back on the fact his diploma said The University of Alabama. Apparently, he believed the name of the school alone would trump other candidates who came from smaller universities or – heaven forbid – those “rickety” historically black colleges.

I considered him foolish. I assumed such an opinion could not possibly be held by a vast majority of individuals. Who would honestly assume a diploma alone, without substantial grades or a resume highlighting extra-curricular prowess, would trump others because it had Alabama stamped on it? Apparently, many people do.

This is what pains me. So many students have this notion of inherent self-importance intertwined with mediocrity. I’m allowed to do below-average or average work, yet expect maximum turnout when applying to graduate schools or pursuing jobs. A seal from The University of Alabama is a ticket to streets paved with gold and glistening champagne stockpiled by oiled-up Norwegian supermodels.

Never mind the student from the smaller school who kept a consistent 3.8 GPA throughout his collegiate career. Ignore the community college student who found an unpaid internship every semester plus work experience in her given field. Completely disregard every single student who has given up a summer or three to ensure they have the appropriate hours to fulfill their double major in less than four years. Your C-average begotten diploma is the big joker in a game of spades.

I have kept a consistent 3.8 GPA on campus. I’ve never taken a summer off. Along with my major, I’m triple minoring. I’ve worked in the SGA while taking on the position of vice president of my fraternity. I’m president now. I’ve been a resident adviser for more than two years. I’ve interned in France for my major and still have been able to find extra time to host my own website and business. Guess what – success in the future is still not a guarantee!

If there is anyone having delusions of unnecessary self-importance it’s probably me, but ask yourself this: If someone like me still questions the certainty of my academic future, do you really think just getting your degree will be enough?


Xavier Burgin is a junior majoring in interdisciplinary studies and film production. His column runs biweekly on Fridays.


More to Discover