Satire: Don’t join the Honors College

Sometimes even 100 percent isn’t enough

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James Jesson/ Daily Collegian (2013)

By Asha Baron, Assistant Op/Ed Editor

Editor’s Note: The following column is satirical. It is meant for humorous purposes. All interviews and individuals are fictitious.

Welcome back to the University of Massachusetts. As students return from Thanksgiving break, registration for spring classes continue, the semester is winding down and finals are right around the corner. With everyone planning for next semester, there is one question on many students’ minds: “Should I join the Commonwealth Honors College?”

As someone who has been in the Honors College since the beginning of my freshman year, I feel the need to add my two cents. If you’re thinking about joining the Honors College, maybe just don’t.

I know it may seem like I’m gatekeeping the Honors College, but that is not my intention. Trust me, you don’t want to be here. I went from being a gifted kid in high school to an honors student in college, and I am so burnt out I no longer feel any emotions. It’s actually a nice coping mechanism for getting through my classes.

When you join the Honors College, you meet the most insanely smart, talented, hardworking and perfectionist people you’ve ever seen. There’s a reason we all got accepted in the college: we have very little respect for our mental stability and well-being. Who cares if we’re deeply depressed? If we’re getting A’s, everything is fine.

People may think that those of us in the Honors College are mentally stable because of our good grades and high academic performance, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. One bad grade, and everything unwinds. I’ve heard students say that they were going to drop out because their A+ was a 98 percent and not a 100 percent. I once told a friend that I got a 100 on an essay and she said, “Oh, better luck next time.” And if you are thinking to yourself “you can’t do better than a 100,” then I hate to break it to you, but the Honors College is not the place for you.

You’ve met STEM kids with superiority complexes, now get ready for honors STEM kids with superiority complexes. They are better than you, and they will never fail to remind you. Inevitably, your inferiority complex will work incredibly well with their superiority complexes. If you are not a STEM student, just don’t join the Honors College. Drop out. Trust me, you’ll be happier.

If you decide not to listen to me, a smart Honors College student, here’s some advice before committing to the Honors College.

Don’t ever talk about your grades with other people, unless you want to feel bad about yourself. The Honors College has its own unique system of grading separate from the University. A is for average, B is for bad, C is for completely unacceptable, D is for drop out right now and never come back and F is for failure in every sense of the word. If you think you should be aiming for just an A, then you may want to reconsider your academic choices.

If you’ve ever felt good about yourself, you will quickly learn otherwise. Are you in a club? That’s cute. Your roommate Emily started college with so many credits the University just gave her a PhD. Sally from down the hall was just nominated for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Jack from English competed in the Olympics when he was five years old. And if you think any of these things are impressive, then I hate to break it to you, but the Honors College is just not the place for you.

At the end of the day, it’s not the worst place to be. At least the school is invested in our education. Who else is going to bring in the money? Just make sure to keep those grades up, because if the school thinks you won’t bring in money through your research or future donations, they will dump you like last week’s trash – and in a way, you are last week’s trash. And this week’s trash. Really, you’re just trash.

The most important thing to remember if you decide to join the Honors College is that you will never be good. If you are proud of yourself, you’re wrong. If you think you did well on something, think again. No matter what, just remember that you are a failure. It’s okay, not everyone can be smart – just everyone other than you.

Please don’t join the Honors College. You don’t want this for yourself. If you want to be miserable, just take a trip to Isenberg. You’ll get a similar effect, but it won’t haunt you for many years to come.

Asha Baron can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @ashajbaron.