Why are some instructors frustrated?

Earlier, I overheard a student wonder why his instructors are not more laid-back. As he saw it, there was something about his major that makes people stuck up, and he thinks that his instructors are exhibiting this attitude. The student in question is hardly a star student; he was held back already. Because of this alone, one would suspect that he was venting his own frustration with his educational progress, but wasn’t willing to accept his own fault for not taking his education and career more seriously.

I don’t know all the details with his situation, but I think that there’s an aspect to this matter that he may not have considered. This is that the instructors might not be stuck up; they might actually be frustrated. And this frustration may be justified.

Why would they be frustrated? I imagine that it may be because, year after year, they see numerous students come in to major in electronics, and then see something like half of the freshman class drop out because, among other reasons, the students don’t take their major seriously.

Think about the kind of insult it would be if, after going to school for years in something, making it their career, going to school for teaching, and finally becoming a teacher, they get in front of students to lecture and what they’re teaching is immediately competing for the attention of some games that some students play on their cell phones.

“Huh? Electronics? Oh, yeah. That’s cool. But can this lecture wait a few more minutes? My knight is almost level 87.”

This is in spite of the fact that some students were on a wait list to start on their major. When the wait list is long, each student that doesn’t care much to learn is making someone else wait at least a year. And for what? So that some twenty-somethings can play Magic: The Gathering in the lab?

Just in my own class, about half of the students didn’t make it to the second year. Several of them dropped out or failed out due to bad grades. One of which tried to cheat on tests, but failed because his grades weren’t good. Another didn’t even want to be there. What his story is, I’m not sure. Perhaps his parents signed him up. He fell asleep in classes, and quickly dropped out. There was one who quickly dropped out because the math proved to be rather esoteric for him. He actually seemed to have enthusiasm, and wanted to form a study group. Perhaps if he hung around and focused, he could have done well. Even though he was only around for about a month, the other students still laugh it up about him, even though it’s been over a year since he dropped out. There was another student that dropped out after trying hard, however. No one made fun of him.

I know that some might prefer the kind of electronics instructors that come off as laid-back. However, the instructors are there to prepare the students for the work force. The work force is even less laid-back.

To get right to the heart of the matter, there’s a reason why students have to learn some maturity before graduating on to the work force. This is because employers and colleagues don’t want to see electronics technicians who…

  • …are incompetent
  • …show up late
  • …steal from workstations
  • …play AMVs (anime music videos) on YouTube instead of working
  • …are nowhere to be found when work needs done, even though they’re on the clock
  • …play practical jokes on their fellow employees.

About that last point, there is one classmate that might be fancying himself as some kind of jokester. If so, he’s setting himself up for disaster, but that would likely take place on the job at this rate. If that’s how it’s going, the people around him might have to take care not to become a casualty of his antics, perhaps including his classmates.

Electronics technicians have a job in which a lot of people count on them. Maturity and competence can make the difference between things running smoothly and having a ton of gum balls on a factory floor. When an instructor passes a student that’s not ready to work professionally as an electronics technician, they are doing nobody any favors.

There’s nothing about pursuing a career in electronics that inherently makes people snotty. It’s one of many ways in which a person can improve themselves, and become more employable. There aren’t many employers out there that are looking for the kind of employees that just want to chill and hang. They want employees that take their jobs seriously. And teachers want students that take what they’re learning seriously.

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