Anyone can learn how to think. Thinking is something that arises naturally from one’s experiences, and the course of life. Learning to become a good problem solver requires more than thinking however. Even criminals understand how to solve problems to reach their goals or to engage in acts that are less than moral.
I feel that to become a reasonable thinker, one must adopt principles that include morality and integrity. The idea that we must do unto others as we expect to have done unto us is one that I carry with me daily. In an educational environment, students are exposed to many temptations and opportunities for risk. At the same time, there is a greater chance than ever before for students to collaborate. Like-minded people can join together to learn from one another, and look at or solve problems that are often far more complex than the ordinary thinker may experience on any given day. Thus, in the educational context, a student may consider him or herself at the prime of life, and presented with opportunities that may not be elsewhere available. When Dr. King considers integrity, character and education, I feel he does so with a nation’s future in mind. People can live independently, or they can learn to adopt principles that foster the good of the common citizen. This includes the people in one’s community, wherever that community exists.
Education teaches students basic skills they can apply to their life situation. For example, the student that does not write well can learn skills at university that will teach them how to write better. However, it is the character of the student that dictates the content that will follow. A student with high integrity and morality may choose for example, if reporting, to report fairly on both sides of an issue. He or she may put aside personal preferences to ensure that an incident is reported in a non-biased fashion. In the same token, a student with character is going to look out not only for themselves, but for others. This is the common basis from which all human beings are formed. The most successful characters are individuals that serve others. In doing so, it is possible to achieve not only one’s personal goals, but also to contribute to the greater good of the whole. This can be a learning experience in and of itself. The others will include community and peers that also have embarked on the journey of life, and invested in education. I feel with strong moral integrity and character, it is possible to create an environment that is collaborative. Further, the minds of many are infinitely more valuable than the thoughts of a single student or character. My goal in furthering my education includes aspiring to learn more, but also learn how to apply what I know not only to my own life, but to the people that I meet and community around me. In this way, I will serve my community and peers as well as my personal aspirations and goals.