The Importance of CEGEP

Marc-Andre Lavigne
Assistant Production Manager

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Writing for Opinions in Bandersnatch can be quite a challenging feat since you have to remain informed about the headlines that are displayed by the media. With the headlines of this summer, I could write an article about sexism from the media at the Rio 2016 Olympics. Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton facing each other in November of this year or Montreal’s ban on pitbulls. Frankly, I must admit that those topics do not interest me at all at the moment, and I feel as though the subjects might be too heavy to assimilate for our brains after being on vacation for so long. With that said, it’s the beginning of a new semester and writing about the importance of Cegep seems like a good idea.
Some of you reading this might be new students to John Abbott College just learning what Bandersnatch is. Others might be learning the way to their classes and feel as though they are walking through a maze (especially if you have a locker in Stewart Hall and have a class on the 3rd floor of Penfield). Whatever you learn as you arrive or return to John Abbott College, there is plenty more to learn in the form of knowledge of self.

While some of you are happy right now regarding the program in which you have now entered, many will feel as though their program is not as they expected it to be. You could be in Sciences and thinking you are not going to survive your chemistry course , but discover your love for math instead. Others entering Police Technology might feel like they are going to be “playing cops and robbers” on campus and go to the gym only to realize that the major part of the program consists of writing reports. In other words, most students will see what they like and hate while studying in college. Knowing that about yourself is really important when we start to consider that if we only noticed that in University and not in Cegep and want to change programs, we would have spent almost $10,000 for nothing. For our wallets, college is a great place to discover where your interests lie.

In my opinion, if a person is unsure of what they like or hate, they could enter the Social Sciences program since it greatly helps some people who feel they do not know exactly what they want to do by covering a wide range of subjects or sciences. I can suggest this because I completed the program and I was able to figure out my preferences as well as to what would be my second option if I continued into higher education. Apart from offering a number of programs for students, one thing is worth it when it comes to your studies in college. A change of program is possible and recommended if a program is not right for you.

Considering that pursuing your studies in Cegep does not cost a lot compared to university, Cegep also helps in providing students with an environment full of opportunities for social interactions that you would not necessarily have in University. Having these social experiences can change you. Conversing, socializing and identifying with other people is an important part of your Cegep experience. This does not limit itself to your interactions with other students. The same thing could happen with your teachers if you develope a good relationship with them.

In short, the greater the knowledge of self through your choice of classes or social habits, the more comfortable you are going to be with your choice of program, your future job and your future self. What I mentioned above is just a part of what you might learn about yourself while studying in Cegep, and I hope your time in college is going to be enlightening. As I am finishing writing this, one of my friends made an error which prompts me to offer an important piece of advice to new students in a Pathways program: Do not forget to request for a change of program towards the end of the year to enter the program for which you are in Pathways.