Over the course of winter break in his hometown, first-year student Willard Sheltz became acutely aware that his dramatic intellectual growth was unparalleled by his high school friends. “Returning to my childhood home has been extremely eye-opening,” Sheltz explained. “It really became clear over the time I spent with my once-close friends from high school. The contrast between us, as truly autonomous individuals, was just so… tangible.”
The companions of Sheltz’s youth, who had chosen to remain in the cradle of innocence that was their hometown university, made them the “perfect foil to analyze my evolution in thought,” discerned Sheltz. When his pals would start up another game of Halo, Sheltz found himself desiring to pull out his iPhone 7 to investigate the latest Robert Reich op-ed. While his friends would detail their affinity for various types of light beers, Sheltz grappled with the reality that he and his college cohort had come to enjoy finer distilled spirits such as Svedka accompanied with a dash of Coca-Cola.
The largest contrast, Sheltz explained to The Hegemonocle, was the disparity in composition of their respective Facebook feeds. Upon glancing at the casual scrolls of his old friends, Sheltz found the lack of credible news sources to be mind blowing. “The part of me which was born and raised here understands surviving to age 18 without adding NowThis Politics to your newsfeed,” Sheltz said. “Yet, how can a so-called educated individual live with himself without following HuffPost Politics or The Hill? It’s difficult to reconcile, even for an empathetic, rational actor like myself.”
However, Sheltz feels as though his time in his home was valuable. “I had a great time seeing them again, and I hope that one day we can truly see eye-to-eye again,” he said, now a bit wistful in tone. “The reality is that courses such as Globalization, Homogeneity, and Heterogeneity are the only thing separating my expanded world view from theirs.”