It was supposed to be a typical late-night trip to Walmart. As usual, my friend and I were perusing through the food aisles, looking for an excuse to spend money we don’t have. And, as usual, we were both on our iPhones when a “CNN Breaking News” alert interrupted his phone usage.
“Dude, did you hear about the Philipines?” he said.
“Yeah, some hurricane hit it or something, right?” I replied.
“It was a typhoon. 2,000 people are dead.” he said.
It was a startling thing to hear. How did I not know about this? I check Twitter at least 20 times a day. How come no one is tweeting about this? Heck, why is no one even talking about it on campus?
Quite frankly, I did not know about the tragic catastrophe in the Philippines because of college. People say there’s a “Huntington bubble,” but let’s stretch that to “college bubble.” I’d like to think we’re informed citizens, but in reality, I know more about the best times to beat the rush at the Huntington Union Building rather than what is happening in the world, like the typhoon in the Phillipines.
Last year, I did not know the extent of the Boston marathon bombings until I sat down with Jesse Brown, associate dean of student development, in the HUB and watched Fox’s coverage of the event before a Huntingtonian interview. He stepped away from his profession for five minutes and watched the news. In just five minutes, I learned more than I ever would from 15 minutes on Fox’s Twitter or Facebook accounts. Why can’t we always stream the news in the HUB?
Unawareness of current events is a grave reality for college students, and it dramatically hurts our interpretations of the world. Imagine how much more informed we would be if we watched the news or read a newspaper in a public setting like the HUB. Like Brown did, let’s step away from our college-focused lives and watch the news. Let’s be more aware, so we don’t have to find out about one of the year’s biggest (and most tragic) stories in Walmart.
Jared Huhta is a junior history education major and is pursuing a career in teaching. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. This column reflects the views of the writer only.