We have just had our awards nights in our community schools. Many students were recognized and rewarded for their academic, athletic and civic achievements. And we, in the pages of our paper, reflected those achievements gladly, but only within the limits we have to work with.
Fortunately there were many students winning awards, but we had only restricted space to depict their successes, inevitably having to leave many out.
It is safe to say that some parents questioned our selection of the pictures wishing to see their children’s photos in place of those we printed. And who can blame them?
Having a child’s accomplishment recognized in the community paper is no doubt not only a source of great pride for the parent, but also a strong encouragement for the student to work harder to do more and better.
And how satisfying it would be for us to be able to run those pictures on several pages, even in a special supplement, but that is an entirely different issue.
Encouragement for students and pride for parents aside, however, there is one important angle of looking at those awards that none of us should forget: Awards should only be the side product of the effort, not the end in itself and should be seen as such by the students as well.
For it is only if we can ensure that one accomplishes an achievement because one does love and believe in it that can we be certain of the purity of the success.
In this age, with media pumping a culture of quick fame and fortune, it is far more difficult to teach the young generation the merit of dedicating their time and effort for a goal that could ultimately identify where they stand in the society than allowing the glitter of the awards to guide them in their life adventure.
— Mustafa Eric