By: Syayid Sandi Sukandi (03185014)
Department of English, Faculty of Letters, University of Andalas
Many people have been studying since they are in kindergarten and most of them enter the university level after finishing the senior high school. However, have they been good students? Although many considerations and viewpoints are available to be used as a guidance in judging what a good student is; nevertheless, this writing provides the most recent viewpoint of a good student. The explanation is written argumentatively so that the ideas are easy to follow. The writer divides four main branches of how to be a good student. They are to the God, to the self, society, and to the family branch. Each of the branches has its own meaning, purpose and position. They are connected one another. If a student can apply those four main branches, the student remains to be the good one.
To the God branch means having a well-built spiritual side. A good student knows his or herself as a human being. Human tends to have many weaknesses and liability to run the life perfectly. Various social conditions that are dynamically and tenacious in any aspects need a good filter. The filter is religion. For instance, the religion is Islam. Either in Islam or in other religions in Indonesia teaches their follower how to be a good man; consequently, by having a good comprehending and application of the religion’s taught and thought, the student is already good spiritually. Basically, the purpose is to guide the student in avoiding negative things seen and found in the society. A good basic, in this case is religion, can help the student to lead his mind and soul to run the role as a student. The only way to do it is through strengthening the comprehending of religion’s either in the conception or application level.
The second brach is to the self branch. It means knowing what he or she needs as an individual student. For instance, the need of knowledge, self-realization, self-respect, creativity and emotional. A good student knows that getting knowledge taught to them is their right in the university. The way to achieve its’ maximum result is through studying hard and setting the goals of every subjects learned in each semester. Meanwhile, self-realization needs is joining the organizations either in the level of department, faculty or university in an appropriate and well-organized schedule so that the time to study is not disturbed by doing extra-activities. Moreover, a good student have his or her own self-respect. It is having a good time management. The purpose is to make his or herself more discipline, that at the end, all tasks, both subjects’ or organizations’ tasks, are done in a great moment and time. Furthermore, creativity is the place for talent; therefore, a good student knows what he or she has in talent. The available competition, in any forms and purposes, either inside or outside of the university becomes the place for him or her to be more exercised so that his or her quality as a student remains sharp and good. The most important self branch is emotional needs. A good student have a well relationship to any positive elements whether in the university or in the society; as an impact, a good student will be mentally and emotionally balanced after having a well spiritual side as it has been explained in the previous paragraph in this branch.
To the society branch means a good student have a good social needs in terms of concerning the social cases, organizations or groups, and networks. As it can be seen lately, many students, especially in the university level, have a good concern to the social cases. The feeling of care is already there; nevertheless, this sort of care should be in control. A good student may do some demonstrations but in an appropriate and conventional way as what law and rules have obliged to do in order to avoid brutality and sarcastic actions. One of the good way for a student to be good in concerning the social cases is by writing his or her own opinions or criticisms about the cases to local, national, or international news and communication media intellectually but understandably so that their mind or thought will be heard and considered by the society. Additionally, it is also to show their existences as the agent of social changes. Meanwhile, any available organizations or groups spread not only in Padang city or West Sumatra, as well as in Indonesia for a large scale, are available to join. However, a good student should know what and how many organizations he or she can follows as well as what the benefits of joining them are. This action done in order to prevent the chaos of time, that at the end, can disturb the time to study. If this thing happens, the maximum result of studying in the university will be far from what the university expects to be; although at the end, the degree will always be in hand. Moreover, expanding networks in important not only as a medium for the student to share but also to promote his or herself as well. Many chances come from having a good networking either online or alive. Indirectly, it can help the university to promote the quality of its’ student to the society that remains unquestionably changes all over the time.
At last but important one is the family branch. Maintaining the relationship to family will provide the safety needs for a good student. A good student knows that he or she is his or her parents’ hope to success in continuing their life. Even though many students live in a boarding house or doing some part-time jobs to earn money, keeping contact to the family will help him to stay in touch to what he or she is before. The point is to make balance emotionally. Basically, as in general viewpoint, having good marks and keeping the good name of family are two things seen as the good ways to make a student becomes good. No matter how many friends a student have in the university or environment, family is always be the better place to overcome burdens that possibly occurs during the studying time. Best friends can be put as family as well. In other words, a good student realizes that he or she cannot live alone so that he needs family, as a place for him to share the emotional needs.
In conclusion, there are four branches of how to be good student that are applicable and generally accepted by people recently. In the first branch, it is to the God. Keeping the spiritual needs up will help the students be on the right track. Consequently, this part is crucial in the process of being a good student. It means to lead the student to the right way of life. Second, to the self branch. A good student knows exactly what his or her rights and obligations as a student such as getting the knowledge, doing some positive creative activities, and joining some available organizations during their time in the university. Third, to the society branch. This branch is mostly dealing with the student’s roles in terms of concerning social cases, organizations or groups, and networks in the society. The last one is to the family branch. It restores all the missing paths whenever a student faces burdens or losing the settled goals in studying. Then, it can be simply said that good student knows that the four main branches should be exist in his or herself as a student. Indeed, the four branches above are the ways how to be good student.
Padang, July 20th, 2007.
This is written for the selection of Best Student Awards in Universitas Andalas by Board of Trustuees, 2007