Laura Laughlin
Residential Learning Coordinator

For as long as I can remember I have in some way been involved in education. Similarly to many professionals in my field, I have always either been going to school, working at a school, or both. If you find yourself reading this blog post, you too find interest in learning and education, whether you are a student, staff, or faculty member. As citizens of an institution of higher education, both you and I are inherently curious beings. When thinking about what it means to be a curious person, it is hard to deny the connection between our curiosity and our purpose at Virginia Tech.

No, it is not our curiosity that we are in danger of neglecting; it is our unwavering commitment to curiosity that has the potential to fall by the wayside. Committing to something implies a dutiful passion, energy, and genuine excitement. As the newness of the academic year fades and the humdrum of our daily lives sets in, our unwavering commitment to being curious can suffer. When we are not committed to being curious, we decide that memorizing answers for a test takes precedent over truly engaging in the subject matter. We decide that what we know is sufficient and become content with the way things are. When we fail to commit to unwavering curiosity, our jobs become tiring and tedious, rather than invigorating. We find that it becomes easier to simply accept what we are told and to stay silent about things that matter.

This particular Aspiration for Student Learning is vital because it is the foundation for the ones that follow. To understand ourselves, we must commit to being curious about what we value and who we want to be. To develop an appreciation of all members of our community, we must commit to understanding before seeking to be understood. To be bold and courageous leaders, we must seek to ask the bigger questions and to be innovative. Finally, upholding Virginia Tech’s motto, Ut Prosim, requires the drive to truly understand what being a citizen of this world means.

Once you capture that unwavering commitment and that dutiful passion, what next? What will you do with what you find out? How will you improve your community? How will you change this world? And when you begin to feel complacent, how will you encourage yourself to continually commit to unwavering curiosity?



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