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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Caden Sierra
Caden Sierra
Sports Writer

Hey. My name is Caden and I'm from the Chicagoland area.  I'm currently going into my 3rd year at NMU.  I'm a multimedia production major with a double minor in journalism and criminal justice. For as...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas Wiertella April 30, 2024

Can you handle the American Dream? Hard work is worth the price

Hundreds of years ago our ancestors boarded a ship to come to a place they had only heard word of. These people came to a new place where they faced unimaginable hardships and did so because they believed in what we refer to now as the “American Dream.” Their push, their struggle, is what made our country what it is now. If we could ask them if the hardships they faced were worth the fruits of their labor, the answer would be a resounding yes. This is the spirit many Americans have lost touch with today: the “work hard for what you want to achieve” mentality. re-Jaron

Many people believe that they should be able to sit back and have everything handed to them, that greatness can be achieved without hard work, but this couldn’t be further from reality. The truth is that if greatness were easy, if the American Dream were easy, then everyone, even those who choose inaction, would have it.

My dream is to become a lawyer and later a judge, but to achieve these admittedly high aspirations I will have to achieve a bachelor’s degree, finish law school, pass the bar exam and work hard to eventually and hopefully become a judge. While this may seem easy for some, it is no simple task for me. I work a part-time job to pay my own bills and live a meager lifestyle.

Why? Because I know that someday my perspiration will achieve my aspirations. If the future I have chosen were easy, the means would never bring perspective to the ends. The hard work doesn’t scare me, it motivates me, and that’s the way everyone should see their own personal struggle.

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While this perspective may (and should) be more of a statement of common sense for college students, there are many people who think that the push for a brighter future isn’t worth the work we put in today.

This stance has always puzzled me when uttered from the mouth of a college student because, after all, why  do so many people flock to this sleepy town in the near height of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to spend thousands of dollars and study for days on end if not for the sheer reason of achieving one’s goals?

College is hard work at times and not nearly as glamourous as the movies portray, yet we come back year after year because we know that while we could all be out partying our twenties away, we, as college students, can put in our time now to make our tomorrows better. College is meant to be the means through which people achieve their slice of the American Dream, not just a pursuit of a degree. As my father would say, “study while you’re young. Party when you’re fifty.”

At the risk of sounding like an old man, I have come to the conclusion that the generation that I unfortunately belong to has taken to complaining about their circumstances, rather than working to change them.

People today are afraid of hard work, afraid to roll up their sleeves and dig into a long day’s work. These people think that working toward their own piece of the American Dream is too hard, that the stress it would cause them outweighs the happiness they would find at the end of the road. In case no one has ever told these people, I’ll step up to the plate and be the first one to say it. Life isn’t fair, life isn’t easy, but with a whole lot of elbow grease, you can make your dreams become a reality.

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