What are you complaining about?

Five days a week I sit among fellow Citrus College students, most of whom are in their late teens to early 20s. Almost every day I listen to them complain about one thing or another.


What exactly are they complaining about? Not much.


I listen to complaints about not having enough time. I listen to complaints about not being able to do their homework because of their job. I say again: they really don’t have much to complain about.


Most adults start their days early, and I mean 5 a.m. early, not 8 a.m. early. Most adults by 8 a.m. have already gotten up, had breakfast or not, packed up for the day books, bills and a lunch and are at their jobs ready to start at 8 a.m. So when I listen to students complain about time, I want to tell them, ‘ get up earlier.’


I sometimes listen to students complaining they couldn’t do their homework because they had too much to do now that they have a job. As a 54 year old adult, if I am lucky enough to have a job in this day and age, I am thankful.  I keep my job by showing up every day on time and volunteer when necessary on top of making sure my work is completed.


I watch as teachers listen to students cry and complain about their situations as excuses for not turning in work or for it being incomplete.  The teacher who is intolerant of excuses and forces students to be responsible and to complete work that is expected of them are to be applauded. I am thankful because it is in those classes that the schedule is adhered to and since I am also a student who faces the same 24 hours in a day I appreciate it.


For the students who are lucky enough to have a teacher who is flexible and tolerant of the constant flow of excuses, they  should stop complaining and as a token of appreciation to their teachers, should finish homework, be on time to class, and at class every day.


Because I can tell every single student that when you get a job there will be no such teacher in the workforce, and you will soon find yourself without a job. If you ask me, some students should be fired and kicked out of class as a result of constant complaining.

Then there are the students who talk through class, giggle with friends, sleep during PowerPoint presentations and secretly text behind a purse or stacks of books. This kind of behavior is flat-out rude, disrespectful  and is the hardest for me to tolerate.


We are all here to learn, at least that’s what I’m here for. Life is full of problems and everyone will always have something to complain about but sooner or later every student wants to be looked at as an adult. They want to be heard by everyone and respected for their opinions. This, they feel, is their right and it should not be violated as they progress towards completing their academic goals here at Citrus College.


Respect is still something that can only be earned. In my eyes, teachers earn it every day as they tolerate these students. As for the younger students, only when I can sit in the classroom from start to finish where everything that the teacher is trying to say can be heard and students take full responsibility for their actions, only then will I be able to see my peers as adults and treat them with respect.


Until then, my complaint is students who need to stop and realize that their behavior does not make them adults. It only makes them annoying, disrespectful, and unworthy any respect from those of us who have tolerated their behavior.


Until then, I continue to bite my tongue and sometimes my pencil while I listen to the complaining and strain to hear over the noise. And that is not an opinion, it is a fact.