What "advice" does one give to college students entering or returning to the Fall Semester? I am tempted to say, "First, learn what 9/11 was all about." That event, more than any other -- whether you want to admit it or not -- has already shaped and is shaping what your world will be like. But normally, I am an advocate of the doctrine, "Do not let your college life be a 'major' in current events." This is a big temptation. Current events are not unimportant, but neither are they education. In 1944, during the World War II, T.S. Eliot, as if to illustrate this point, was invited to give a lecture to the Virgil Society in London. The lecture he gave was not about war. It was entitled, "What Is a Classic?" Why did he not speak of war? Because he thought war had a purpose and we better, at least some of us, know its purpose. Otherwise, we can lose the war even if we win the battles.
-- Fr. James V. Schall, "On School and Things That Are Not Fair", Ignatius Insight, August 24, 2006,