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The Unspoken Reality Behind the Harvard Gates | Alex Chang | TEDxSHSID

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【Updated】 New TEDx video on college admissions: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sk3_I...

Back in high school, Alex was not exactly "Ivy League material." He did not even finish top 5 in his public high school in New York, did not get a near-perfect SAT score, did not win national honors in math, was not a starter on his lacrosse team, and did not have rich and famous parents to get him into places. Therefore, his story of being accepted and completing his education at Harvard College and Harvard Graduate School of Education as an "ordinary student" served as the prime model for high school students who want to reach their dream schools. However, in addition to sharing his secrets to Ivy League admission, Alex feels the social responsibility to inform-and warn-students about the life behind those Ivy League gates. Things may not always be as pretty as they seem.

Speaker: Alex Chang
Date: April 1, 2017

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at www.ted.com/tedx

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Professional connection: www.linkedin.com/in/alex-chan...

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24 Jan 2019

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Comentários 15 027
Caitlyn Liu
Caitlyn Liu 3 anos atrás
more asian parents need to see this
Babiy Assefa
Babiy Assefa Mês atrás
@Jani l don't understand ???
Babiy Assefa
Babiy Assefa Mês atrás
@RepliesMuted you're not Angel just human
steve2k _fn
steve2k _fn 3 meses atrás
pls no
Winnie Chung
Winnie Chung 3 meses atrás
They won’t care, “face” and prestige is more important to them
Shikshya
Shikshya 4 meses atrás
And also every realtives and your neighbourhood of asian society should also see this and not be so judgy😎
Rhonda Rockwell
Rhonda Rockwell Anos atrás
I taught at Harvard for five years. At the beginning of my second semester, I asked the head of the Mental Health dept of Student Services why Harvard people-students AND faculty-were so uniformly miserable. He answered me directly: “Everyone here finds their limits”-i.e., exactly what Alex Chang is describing here-“so they get grumpy and depressed.”
jinfan Duan
jinfan Duan 14 dias atrás
@Rhonda Rockwell Hello, but is it much more rigorous for 15 and 16 year olds to apply to Harvard than for other seniors? Or is it easier?
twinklestars95
twinklestars95 20 dias atrás
Yes I came from a high-ranked uni in Asia and there are more students than the public think who benefit from the uni's mental health related care and resources
Babiy Assefa
Babiy Assefa Mês atrás
@Nephilim Power being smarter in mathematics is becoming for super engineered person That's not my game peoples doing on his attitude don't make things God here
NANDU TRICKSTER KING 369
I studied mechatronics in diploma, can you recommend me for the university
George Washington
George Washington 4 meses atrás
Well many of the students do 5-8 classes at a time and assume it’s easy to juggle for the sake of finishing on time . There is no balance in doing 5-8 classes lol. They should work and gain life experience, do a manageable amount of classes, and graduate with a feeling of no stress. In the end no one gives a Fucj about your degree, but rather Whay life skills you have
cloudfrost
cloudfrost 11 meses atrás
I've just started at Oxford and can already recognise a lot of this. Everybody I've spoken to has imposter syndrome, but knowing that doesn't help very much. I'm in the library until 1 AM most nights and secretly feel like I'm not good enough to do this degree. There are bars to prevent people jumping out of the windows in my accommodation. However, I would still say going to a prestigious university is well worth it, because the flip side of no longer being the smartest person in the room is that you get to learn from your peers.
Insomniac.
Insomniac. 27 dias atrás
If you succeed you’ll get a job which’ll have solid wage so that’s a big win regardless of Oxford’s negative sides
Private Account
Private Account 3 meses atrás
Intense! Hope you're doing OK. Sounds unbelievably stressful. Love and strength from one Emily to another xo.
SeldimSeen1
SeldimSeen1 3 meses atrás
The secret is self belief. Also, I am not one to believe what others think about me. We all have our imperfections. Grasp them, celebrate them. Be self aware without shame.
NANDU TRICKSTER KING 369
I would like to study in ox so can you recommend me for college,I studied mechatronics in diploma
Kana Jingly
Kana Jingly 3 meses atrás
So long as you don't get fucked over by the stress and end up with an anxiety disorder for the several years. Unfortunately a lot of "smart" people don't know how to do the math on that one and later come to regret it.
tharock220
tharock220 11 meses atrás
This isn't limited to "Ivy League gates". I've seen it everywhere. Here in Texas, high level high school students will get into engineering programs at UT or A&M and struggle mightily. Biology students with 4.0 GPA's as undergraduates find themselves feeling overwhelmed in medical school. Herm Edwards gave a talk to incoming NFL rookies, and he told them every person in the NFL was special in high school. A person should learn at a young age that as they see more of the world they'll find the things they believe set them apart are actually fairly common, not be exposed to it as they're entering adulthood.
feldgrau
feldgrau 3 meses atrás
My Grandfather graduated from the Engineering program at A&M. When he was talking with his professor, his professor saw that he got a 76 in the final exam and he said "So you over-studied."
anthony zou
anthony zou 3 meses atrás
That is the same as the concept of class rank not being the most accurate way to depict a person’s ability. A valedictorian may be thought as through a stereotype as being smarter and most talent than anyone else in college admission, but considered this. There are 20 something thousand schools in America that each has a number 1 student. If you compare each of those number ones to each other, they all can be the valedictorian/1 anymore. Therefore, the admission officers have to use other factors to decide who is more worthy to accept and who to decline. This also shows that you shouldn’t be boastful of yourself as in life, there is always going to be people better than you in some aspects or better than yourself as a person.
Anthony Potamitis
Anthony Potamitis 4 meses atrás
Yeah, studying engineering is very hard in general.
Milan Labus
Milan Labus 4 meses atrás
@Ricardo Morales that hard in every college. there is no human who can breeze through an engineering course
Ricardo Morales
Ricardo Morales 4 meses atrás
@Milan Labus automotive engineering
RedemptioN
RedemptioN 11 meses atrás
I just graduated from Cornell and I remember the day I was accepted: everyone was so "happy" for me, weeks later my friends would say things like "Cornell is the worst Ivy right?" Meanwhile at Cornell the culture is cutthroat, everyone trying to snake their way to good grades at the expense of their peers. It's not as glorious as people make it out to be (at least while you're there). What really resonates w me is "everyone was good at hiding their feelings" sheeeeesh glad 99% of ppl at these colleges have similar experiences even though you think you're the only one struggling
Nikplaysgames
Nikplaysgames Dia atrás
I’m EDing to Cornell (my mom is forcing me to lol), I’ve heard extremely positive things about how fun it is and how great the people and culture are, and extremely negative things (people are snakes, you are isolated on campus, etc.)
Kyoko Takoya
Kyoko Takoya 4 meses atrás
i only knew cornell as the college that would spit out either humanity's impending doom or salvation. honestly as a high school student the only two examples i can come up with are the morris worm and the nano guitar(nano-scale printing and engineering tech). from the get go there's already a huge spectrum of success and that at one ivy scares me.
Nesh Rajah
Nesh Rajah 4 meses atrás
😊
Veronica Jata
Veronica Jata 5 meses atrás
@anthony zou gosh that's terrible! I've never heard of colleges using bars.
Cisium
Cisium 5 meses atrás
Before I left for college, my Dad told me something I have always remembered. "You got in because you finished at the top of your class, but everyone else there finished at the top of his class too. And after first semester, most of you won't be at the top of your class anymore. Whatever you do, don't flunk out and don't drop out. Your mother and I don't care if you graduate last - just graduate in four years." I did, and I've since realized that most people don't even care where I went to college, let alone my GPA or my class rank. I'm so thankful my Dad told me that because I was able to go for me, not anyone else.
Jahangir Butt
Jahangir Butt 2 meses atrás
I know lol Even when u apply for a job they won't look at what college you went. To or your degree but only your expirence
haruharu
haruharu 3 meses atrás
That's some cool dad! Congratulations
Khải Huỳnh Cao
Khải Huỳnh Cao 3 meses atrás
Your dad is great, you are so lucky
Palpasha Karki
Palpasha Karki 3 anos atrás
This guy was on the brink of tears and I’m so proud of him for telling us his story.
Alethes Sophia
Alethes Sophia 4 meses atrás
@RTJmart Yea, actually I learned it at Harvard. No joke.
RTJmart
RTJmart 4 meses atrás
@Alethes Sophia lol it’s crazy how people think ur smart because of your vocabulary
mmm
mmm 4 meses atrás
@Alethes Sophia 😄
Jesus has given you all. Repent or die.
Repent to Jesus Christ “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” ‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭18:21‬ ‭NIV‬‬ Ki
Ahndeux
Ahndeux 11 meses atrás
He is absolutely right. In high school, I remember the hallways had lists showing which colleges the students were accepted and attending in the following year. At the time, I had no inspiration to go to college and was interested only in going to a trade school to learn about aircraft mechanic. Many of my friends and colleagues were planning to attend MIT, Harvard and many other Ivy League schools. I ended up going to the trade school and got an A&P mechanic license. However, the A&P education I received made me want to strive for more. I ended up enrolling in community college and transferring to a 4 year college. I eventually got my mechanical engineering degree and was happy with reaching my career goals. Later on, I learned that some of my friends who attended college dropped out and had other problems due to the pressure. I agree with Alex that its best to pursue your own dreams and goals at at a pace that you feel comfortable. There are always pressures, but overcoming those obstacles is the best way to approach success. There are many paths in life, but if you pursue your dreams instead of letting the pressure overcome you, you will be much happier in life.
nonamespls
nonamespls 2 meses atrás
Nice story, sometimes success is just continuously moving forward, small steps, small easy steps, enjoying the journey.
Stormy Dayz
Stormy Dayz 2 meses atrás
community colleges are the way to go!!
Ousmane Konate
Ousmane Konate 3 meses atrás
Amen to that
ㅇㄹㅇ
ㅇㄹㅇ Mês atrás
I came back to this video after my friend passed away due to the same reason. It's been almost a year since the incident happened, but it's still engraved in my brain. The first time I watched this was 2 years ago, when I was working on my essays for US uni apps. Didn't get into any, and I ended up going to a prestigious university in Asia instead. Felt like a failure, but I was doing alright. COVID made it very hard to socialize and talk to people, but I still managed to become friends with a few. Halfway through my first sem, one of the few friends I made at uni passed away. And I still don't know why he made that decision. I still have messages from him on my phone that he sent the day before he passed away. Nothing seemed wrong. I still remember this extroverted, hard-working person who was mature and wise. But now, it's as if he didn't exist in the first place. Everyone who used to know him pretends like they don't know him at all, but I still open up the messages we sent each other every once in a while just to remind myself he did exist. Being a uni student sometimes sickens me. The day after I found out my friend died, I woke up early to finish an assignment that was due at midnight. I prepared for my tests and exams, and got surprisingly good scores. But inside, I was devastated, trying to cope with the situation. Being academically successful doesn't mean you're more organized and stable than the rest. It's absurd how we all pretend to be alright when we know no one is truly alright.
jessica williams
jessica williams 11 meses atrás
I feel like parents are over-pressuring their kids too often. Yes, they might think that it is good for them, their future, etc. but actually it's more of a burden than actually helping them. and I agree with the fact that suddenly getting a b or c when you always have straight a's is just really hard to accept, I think everyone has experienced it.
Ethan
Ethan 3 horas atrás
@Trent Irvin "seek on their own" anddd that's where these tiger parents come in.
Trent Irvin
Trent Irvin 4 meses atrás
Also these Ivy League schools incentivized that pressure by requiring a level of achievement even outside of academics that’s basically inhuman for any child to seek on their own
Horizon
Horizon 4 meses atrás
I’ve always said “I wanna go to some Ivy League school when I grow up” but recently I’ve been thinking of how hard it would be to compete with thousands of other number 1s who are also realizing that they can’t all be #1 anymore
Maivy Le
Maivy Le Mês atrás
but who says that you have to compete when you are there? you're not always going to be on top or the best. there may be people who are smarter than you but you just have to deal with it and realize everyone has their own worth and abilities. you can just do your best there and get the passing grades and get the diploma yk? W. don't allow not being the best to hold you back from doing your best and going to a good school.
venus
venus 3 anos atrás
When he says that he wants to be successful for his parents, you could hear his voice trembling and my heart just broke.
Kana Jingly
Kana Jingly 3 meses atrás
That's what happens when your worldview is totally fucked by the failings of the environs you grow up in.
Jesus has given you all. Repent or die.
Repent to Jesus Christ “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” ‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭18:21‬ ‭NIV‬‬ Ku
Maha
Maha 5 meses atrás
@eburcua For a lot of kids who feel this way (including me) it‘s the very fact that my parents will love me regardless of the amount of success I achieve, that makes me want to be successful for them. They just want to see me happy, so I want to make them happy. That doesn’t mean it isn’t for me and my life. It just means that I want to see the sparkle of pride in their eyes when they look at me. It is as much for me as it is for them. It is a form of repaying them for all the hard work and sacrifice they’ve done for you to get to a good place in life. It’s a passion that comes from within you, not from your parents forcing you or pressuring you into it. Immigrants and developing countries have this mindset. I feel like most white majority countries don’t understand this.
Kerry P
Kerry P 5 meses atrás
It's not healthy.
박하영
박하영 10 meses atrás
Alex, I can't thank you enough. 5 years ago I dropped out my formal university which is quite prestigious in my country. Then I chose to be an elementary school teacher just to escape from all kinds of competition. But after few years, I started to flounder in a deep depression looking back at hasty decision. I felt guilty on myself for not trying to overcome difficulties back in the engineering school. But thankfully watching this clip, for the first time I feel completely free to realize that I've never failed yet. I learnt what's truely important is that you can still try your best in where you are. Thank you for the most authentic, brave and powerful message. Bless you.
Rubeena Peerzada
Rubeena Peerzada 2 meses atrás
I also don't like this competition thing
Dark Lord
Dark Lord 4 meses atrás
Im happy for you ;D
Peter Nguyen
Peter Nguyen 11 meses atrás
I’m an OSU ME student with zero extracurricular activities, getting C’s instead of B’s and getting B’s instead of A’s. I thought I would not be to able to relate to this Harvard student (at least in the first 5 mins), but holy crap, I recognized all the stress points he mentioned, especially with the family questions.
twinklestars95
twinklestars95 20 dias atrás
Everytime I struggle in my job and don't perform as well as others despite trying my best, I will return to this video to remind myself that we are always on a bell curve and someone has to take the bottom. I graduated from a prestigious university with a good GPA hence this phase of "adulthood" and adjustment has been very trying on me. I relate to this guy so much
M-Hello There
M-Hello There 4 meses atrás
Very interesting talk. This man seems well mannered and his drive for making his parents happy is really something to respect.❤️ May God bless you all
N Martz
N Martz Anos atrás
I’ll never forgot we had this one kid in our school. Pham. #4 ranked in the school, had scholarships to like every Ivy League school out. The principal literally came into a class of his I happened to be in to tell him all the schools he got accepted to which was like 30 of them. He went to harvard, Anyway i decided to go to a junior college down the street. 2 years later he was in one of my classes in junior college. I was shocked as hell. I was like brooo what the hell why are you here!! Ain’t you go to harvard… He just looked at me with this dreadful face like almost of pure sadness and just nodded his head and was like… it was to much man. My grandmother and parents no longer support me or talk to me… but honestly i’m happier here. It was to much. I am still in shock to this day
Sayesha Rajdutt
Sayesha Rajdutt 5 meses atrás
Bro his parents and grandparents are toxic as HELL. I will be honest, I wanna go to an ivy League college too but I know for a fact that my parents would never hate me or dislike my decision in the slightest if I couldn't cope with any Ivy League college(if i get in). If I end up getting rejected, I know my life won't be over and I will just go to another college.
Pietro Smusi
Pietro Smusi 6 meses atrás
Those are not schools, those are advanced robot builder machines. A school teaches you how to think and solve things, not how to be productive. I'm glad I'm Italian and I studied philosophy as well as science and math. People always use knowledge for competing with each other, when in reality it should be focused on cooperation.
Yennefer
Yennefer 7 meses atrás
aw poor kid :(
Lineo Blanch
Lineo Blanch 7 meses atrás
Dang.
Nissim Levy
Nissim Levy 7 meses atrás
@Ah Af OK. I will completely trust what you tell me is the truth. You cannot be wrong.
Lorraine Boyd
Lorraine Boyd 6 meses atrás
Alex, you honesty is outstanding. More high school students need to know that the first year of college is difficult no matter what school they are in. It is a big adjustment. You have to get to know your professors and see what their styles and expectations are. It is common for A students in high school to get Cs the first semester. A B at Harvard means you still worked hard. It is sad that there is so much pressure. I didn't go to Harvard. I always did my best and I didn't really care about my grades. My parents expectations from elementary school on, were do your very best. I know Asian students have a lot of pressure from day one because of the competition. If they could relax a little more, they would most likely do better grade wise. I lived in China for 3 years. Alex, you will go far in life where ever you work. Just always stay as honest as you were in this TEDx.
Ivy-Way Academy
Ivy-Way Academy 6 meses atrás
Thanks Lorraine!
Konrad Quizon
Konrad Quizon 4 meses atrás
Damn, this really hitting hard on me rn. I barely passed my 3rd year subjects in undergraduate pre-med course and I’ve been doubting myself for quite some time if I can handle going to med school. It’s really hard not to disappoint your parents and peers around you as an Asian myself. I hope the best for other struggling students out there!
Bruce Humphrey
Bruce Humphrey 11 meses atrás
Can we just stop evaluating people on test scores and GPA, and instead evaluate them on actual skills and capabilities? The reality is, nowadays you don’t really need to go to college for most professions. Yes, I’m talking about high-paid professions. Instead of promoting universities, we should instead be promoting internships, jobs, or extracurricular activities. It doesn’t matter if you graduate top 1 in your class from Yale or any prestigious university. If you have little or no experience when applying for a job, they’ll most likely reject you. I personally learned more from my internships in college than the actual school. College teaches you to be a working bee instead of a queen bee. It teaches you to think inside the box instead of outside. We are living in 2021, for God’s sake. We have access to endless resources, and some of them at your fingertips. Attend seminars, conferences, do research, surround yourself with professionals, do some networking, etc.
Yeeter McFeeter
Yeeter McFeeter 4 meses atrás
Well tbh, school doesn’t really teach that many skills.
PEPEGA
PEPEGA 4 meses atrás
@Bruce Humphrey +😑💀
Bruce Humphrey
Bruce Humphrey 4 meses atrás
@PEPEGA No + one + is + telling + you + to + not+ go + to + college.
PEPEGA
PEPEGA 4 meses atrás
Cool, still I I will probably apply to get electric engineering degree or even mathematics degree. Seems cool+L+don't care+love math+will learn programing online(at least try)+ I'm sophomore high school+ who cares+ i feel confident and don't care about getting bad grades+ don't care about other opinion+ why even bothering about stress+ gigachad+ you sound like boomer(honestly)
Bruce Humphrey
Bruce Humphrey 4 meses atrás
@Alec Thomas And you clearly didn’t read my comment right, as I said “most,” not “all.” Also, STEM jobs/careers don’t even make half of the world’s job percentage.
Kuro No
Kuro No 4 meses atrás
The thing is about depression, most people are not likely to commit suicide when they are at their lowest point. Health specialists and family members must be much more vigilant when they come out of that. They do not have the energy to do anything at the lowest point, it's usually right before or right after when you think they are doing okay now, they're getting better. When that second wave of depression hits and something triggers those stressors, they now have the energy to commit because they likely spent most of their time prior to resting from their fatigue
Rachel Rogers
Rachel Rogers 3 anos atrás
This was almost the exact same lecture I got during my medical school orientation. The problem is that people build their identities around their achievements. When this happens a failure is not simply a failure - it's an attack on who you are. *Know this:* You are more than your achievements. If you fail you are still the same person who achieved, but now you have an opportunity to learn and improve from life's greatest lesson, failure.
A Coul
A Coul 4 meses atrás
I probably would have turned out the same had I gone to the Ivy leagues that accepted my application. I decided to go to a community college to figure myself out and what I really wanted to do and that in turn centered me and helped me not identify with my scholarly achievements. I met all sorts of people and realized the school you attend doesn't matter as many of my peers who also got into BIG Tech Companies after college didn't all go to ivy leagues or big name schools. They knew their kung fu and were able to socialize thus mesh well with multiple environments. That shows during interviews. You're intelligence should be in the background and how you interact with people influence by it. Don't move about the world with a chip on your shoulder as "the leader" or "smartest" and people will allow you into their groups/institutions/Companies. People want to connect, not confront you.
Esther Celma Vidal
Esther Celma Vidal 4 meses atrás
Yes I’m
S Days
S Days 5 meses atrás
Not their identities-their self-worth or value around achievement.
Rachel Rogers
Rachel Rogers 5 meses atrás
@Calube You waited till 15 to cure cancer? ... amateur
Calube
Calube 5 meses atrás
I think I’m a good person and I don’t have many achievements as a senior in high school. Should I? People with countless achievements win all the scholarships and praise, and it just makes me feel awful. I am decent at the what I want to do in the future because I put time into that and just enjoying life, not getting 10,000 service hours and curing cancer at 15.
I am Geno.
I am Geno. 3 meses atrás
I'm not applying to harvard, but this was a very eye opening message for someone like me who's overconfident that i can do good or better than others.
Loi Luc
Loi Luc 5 meses atrás
Bravo brother! As a teacher myself, I've seen so many of high school students being under excruciating pressure just as to get to what they call "dream university". This kind of talk should be shared more because it's the matter of being true to who they are rather than look up to others whose capability is way better than theirs in terms of academic performance. Accept yourself, move on and evolve at your own pace. Success is on your way as long as you decently work hard and never quit!
divine32
divine32 8 meses atrás
I went to Cornell. What he said is true. It's very very hard. If I could do it over again, I would dial it down a little by going to UCLA or UC Davis instead. I would have a better undergrad experience, the same job that I have now, and less awkward pauses when people learn where I got my BS.
12Rez4uTv
12Rez4uTv 11 meses atrás
Everything he said is true but I would say it doesn’t only pertain to Harvard… it can be any college or school you go to and things will be as he says, it’s just Harvard is a bigger name school and that means bigger expectations… larger amounts of stress etc.
Barbie R
Barbie R Anos atrás
My friend went to Harvard because her parents wanted her to. She went into a deep depression and ended up transferring to another university after only one semester. Needless to say she was much happier.
allen teo
allen teo Anos atrás
@Cheryl Monterola to get into these ivy league school, it's not just about IQ anymore it's more like doing well/excel in EVERYTHING...physically, mentally and in IQ
BAMF
BAMF Anos atrás
Yeah harvard is hard. But hard work pays off alot.
Alfie Marc
Alfie Marc Anos atrás
@Anthony Cekic he quit that and moved to Seattle to start Amazon out of his garage
Anthony Cekic
Anthony Cekic Anos atrás
@Alfie Marc his step dad gave him 300k to start Amazon so having parents with money and business acumen also helps.
Beng Kim Chua
Beng Kim Chua Anos atrás
@Alfie Marc Jack Ma got rejected by Harvard 24 times I think..... but that's another story...
NoNameNate
NoNameNate 4 meses atrás
I read a book in high school called 'David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants'. I found it a really good read, and I still find myself thinking about the things I learned from it today, ~5 years later. Each chapter was a story of an underdog overcoming an allegorical giant. In one of the chapters, it was discussed that it might sometimes be better to be a big fish in a little pond then a little fish in a big pond. This Ted Talk made me think of that chapter. Probably everybody thinks it would be awesome to say they got into Harvard. The connotations of that statement is that you're brilliant. But, that doesn't mean you should go there. That is because most people who go to Hardvard are brilliant. That means that the relative level of intelligence, work, creativity, dedication, etc. will be far higher at Harvard than at virtually any other school. Instead of excelling at Harvard, you might barely meet expectations, and get C's, not get attention from Professors because they are focused on the other brilliant minds, etc. On the other hand, being brilliant and attending a good school might make you one of their most brilliant members. You'll get good grades, be recognized by and given attention by Professors, and so on. In short, you'll be a big fish in a little pond and prosper, whereas you might be a little fish in a big pond at places like Harvard. That's not to say Harvard isn't the right place for everybody. But some people really might enjoy the experience of being a big fish at a little sea more.
Pauline ZweiVierSieben
Pauline ZweiVierSieben 7 meses atrás
Maybe that’s the education they were missing: knowing how to deal with not being the best, „failing“, not getting what they want or think they deserve. Harvard is gifting them a very important life lesson/experience
shooter7a
shooter7a 3 meses atrás
You have to enjoy learning, and you have to have interest in what you are studying. If you do that, even hard becomes easy. If you are not genuinely interested in what you are studying, then easy becomes hard. I went to another Ivy League school, Columbia, which is known for being even more academically rigorous that Harvard. I chose Columbia because I wanted to study Engineering, and Columbia had a far better Engineering program. I truly liked what I was studying. Frankly, I did not find it that hard. I even took mostly 4000 Level (Graduate) Engineering courses my Sr. year. I aced most of them because I found them really interesting and cool. I literally could not way for class, and I even did extra problems because I enjoyed learning the material. I mean come on...we studied missile guidance and control systems, aero-elasticity and mechanical vibration.
Maivy Le
Maivy Le Mês atrás
Columbia is an amazing school, i know a girl from my high school who went there
yeeyee
yeeyee 11 meses atrás
as a singaporean with open-minded parents, i can really resonate with the speaker. it really sucks that the system is actively grilling us to do the best that we can. and to do the best that we can, it is being quantified by yardsticks that are impossible to attain. it's gotten to the point where a NINE year old committed suicide because of the high stress levels at school. it's gotten to a point where parents has forcefully overworked a child, to the point that they passed away during their short "nap" at their study desk. it's gotten to a point where our first ever in-school murder case occured this year in july. both the victim and the perpetrator were STUDENTS. the murderer's intentions were unclear and it was kill-on-sight incident. embarrassingly, despite having a "first in everything" mentality, our mental health system sucks. help is given, but its inadequate. our mental healthcare system is lightyears dated as compared to other countries. students are still shamed for doing badly, and the "asian mentality" is still very prominent in parents. we need more people like this speaker to advocate for issues like this in singapore. unfortunately, we rarely experience bottom-up changes. only those at the top can advocate for us.
Thea Pan
Thea Pan Anos atrás
I hope Alex sees this: YOUR TED talk changed my life. my Asian parents were ok with their average kid, but I was not. I would watch people's reaction videos of them getting into the big schools and cry in my bed, feeling like a disappointment. But when Alex said "if your goal is to get into grad school, it might be better to go to a college and do well, than a dream school and struggle", that sent chills down my spine. I want to be a vet, which meant this advice is applicable. I changed the way I looked at my application, took off the "reach schools" like UCLA which I definitely was not getting into (being realistic here), and made my "dream school" UMass Boston (UMB), a school not far from Harvard, maybe not as cool, but it's on a peninsula across the street from the ocean with great food and dorms. It was a "safe school" that I knew I would be happy and do well in. So now I'm writing this from my UMB dorm room, halfway through the first semester of college, and it's the best decision I've ever made. so thank you, Alex, you saved me.
mi3helle707
mi3helle707 10 meses atrás
Aww this is beautiful 😭
Babu Khan
Babu Khan 10 meses atrás
Jane ,u r beautiful ❤️
Zohra Gardee
Zohra Gardee Anos atrás
It sounds like you did a very healthy reorganizing of your priorities for yourself. Masha Allah. I would caution anyone reading this not to watch videos of other people getting what you want in life, and making yourself cry. That's like crashing baby showers because you're infertile.
D. W.
D. W. Anos atrás
I love this! Congratulations on all of your dreams coming true in advance, Jane.
Kinsey Lise
Kinsey Lise 11 meses atrás
In high school I attended an Ivy mill, it was hell. We had about 2 suicides per 1000 students every year and nothing changed. I was in almost all honors classes all four years, I never received tutoring, and I spent my entire life doing extracurriculars and homework. My sleep app from those years says that I averaged 4.5 hours of sleep a night, including summers. Nobody at my school made friends, not because they're competing, but because it was a foreign concept; why waste time on friends when you could be studying or building your resume? My parents didn't even push me, I just fell in that way because of my school atmosphere and fear that I wouldn't get a job later in life. In high school being surrounded by the kind of students that you were around in Harvard I was repeatedly forced to feel the inadequacy that you describe, so I knew better than to apply and went to a regular college for cheap tuition. The classes I'm taking now are so easy, I don't need to study, I don't need to work hard, I took second year classes as a freshman and the content was stuff that I covered in freshman year of high school. It was a complete shock. This is something that I don't think people understand. There are entire (public!) high schools where people learn masters level content to be groomed for success, where even people like me who were bottom of the barrel get straight A's and full rides to most colleges. Harvard is full of the most driven and intelligent of those people. It isn't a dream, it's a nightmare.
John Doe
John Doe 4 meses atrás
what state
Thoryan
Thoryan 11 meses atrás
Out of the 5 years I spent at Community College and my University, only one semester challenged me to the level mentioned in this talk, my second to last semester. I wanted to quit but realized the rational decision was to drop one of my general education classes (a class that was both difficult and had little value to me) and to take an extra class during my last semester. The rest of the semester was still difficult but it was a huge weight off my shoulders. Furthermore, taking the extra class during my last semester wasn't as hard as I expected it to be. As a result, I graduated. To have to re-live my second to last semester but to have to live it through *ALL* of my semesters would have been an absolute nightmare.
Megane
Megane 11 meses atrás
What my dad had told me when I was growing up "... Grades defines your literacy but it doesn't define life.. The reality to survive is to build real connections with fewer people who will be there for you in the long run and in exchange you will be there for them as well."
FreeBirdz
FreeBirdz 4 meses atrás
I feel bad for individuals like Alex Chang who work so hard to get to a place they want to be but are not rewarded. Do people think these top colleges have a secret formula, new curriculum, or magic book that would put them ahead of everyone else? The answer is no! Everyone uses the same books and receives the same information. The problem in Alex's case he had to pay 40k more than everyone else. As for myself, looking at business schools like Wharton, where some course's content for MBA classes consisted of only articles and no books. These schools aren't providing the same dedication as the students working so hard to be there.
Revan ZeroMc
Revan ZeroMc 11 meses atrás
This remembered me something in my life I'm Mexican, but the pressure is still there when you go to college, my father wanted me to get a good scholarship and being in the best private school here so I can be a successful engineer and business person, I didn't want that, my mother told me, follow what you really want, I went to a good public college, I was very stressed but happy to be there, now I'm just someone in a junior job, but I keep loyal to my dream, being an investigator and get my PHD in computer science
Spyder
Spyder 4 meses atrás
I struggled even in high school. My most challenging subject was English because it was my second language. And I continued to struggle even at an average college. Higher education is not for everyone. Just choose that path that makes you happy.
Gameplay
Gameplay 8 meses atrás
I went to top university, the best in southern hemisphere. I was smart kid in school, top of the class always, good at sports etc. I had a feeling like I could achieve anything in this world. During my senior years at uni, I was exhausted, burnt out, near depression due to failing courses. Imagine if you have studied all the lecture notes, done all the tutorial/demonstration questions and practiced them but still fail. It hits hard. You would be like "oh what is the big deal, failing is common". Yeah it is but if you fail one course, you need to wait till another year to do the same course because that course might not be offered other semesters in that year. So there goes one year of your life. You are falling behind. The lecturers do their best to fail you in exam by bring questions from PhD or masters level in 2 hour exam and there are 4 questions. In one of the courses, there were 10 questions, and you only have 10 mins per question. One of the lecturers told us on the first day of the course, "look at the student sitting next to you, either you or him will fail, 50% of students will fail". It is almost pre-programmed to fail certain % of students. Whereas, my friends from school who weren't that smart, went to lower tier uni, they graduated in time, had good experience and enjoying their lives now because when they failed the course, they would pay the lecturer $500 as bribe to pass them. Moral of the story is, do not put lots of pressure on yourself by getting into top uni, it is not for everyone.
av
av 3 meses atrás
Melbourne Uni?
Lubystka Olamonola
Lubystka Olamonola 11 meses atrás
One of my teacher (wonderful lady) said that "None of your employers is going to care what school you went to or what grades you had there. You must know your subject (math, language, history, biology), no matter if you graduated from Harvard or some cheap local university." Make it simple. If you know Spanish, none cares if you graduated from Harvard, Yale, or Monster Academy. Very wise words from her.
Syauqi Rashad
Syauqi Rashad Anos atrás
When he was talking about his parents, you can hear his voice trembling, you can just imagine how he must have felt when his parents kept calling him and he couldn’t give them the answer they expected. It hurts cause I’m pretty sure alot of us experienced / is experiencing some form of this.
Ladas552
Ladas552 Anos atrás
It is more like he failed his own expectations, and could not show that to his parents.
emoticon feliz
emoticon feliz Anos atrás
Yeah, I went to study abroad to make my parents proud and it was pretty much that, I became all depressed (almost suicidal) because my parents spent so much money for me and I wasn't able to do good enough no matter how much effort I spent, I would be taking it in while talking with my parents throught webcam and cry just after ending the call, it was very hard for me to get out of that toxic mentality, gather myself together and find a sense of value were my grades didn't define how much I was worth
Emaan Ahsan Sarfraz
Hello! How is everyone? If anyone needs someone to listen, someone to talk to, or a friend. I am here to talk, listen, and be a friend. Know that you are amazing and have rights as a human. Please have appropriate action for anything that you know is wrong. Anything that seems bad or wrong in your life right now will get better. Please don't do what is wrong, fighting back and harming others will not solve the problem. Please understand that and do the good thing. It will one day come back to you. The people in the world are so much more than what we know about them, not everyone opens up about the beautiful things and acts they have witnessed, not all those amazing doings are acknowledged. Please understand that and know that. If you feel like no one cares about you, know that I care about you. Together, we can be a better community. Stay safe, healthy, happy, kind, understanding, positive and strong!
I am a Pokerface
I am a Pokerface Anos atrás
a lot*
dame104
dame104 Anos atrás
I resonated with him when talking about his parents, its the same how my parents treat me. They view me as the bread winner as I am the first born and there were high expectation but in reality, I was just that one average Asian who sometimes gets a high grade sometimes just a passing mark. Right now, my parents often ask me how my job hunting is and I'd say literally the same lines as Alex said.
Jose Paul Loor
Jose Paul Loor 5 meses atrás
Yes he is so right I went to Fordham University For my BA, New York College of Podiatric Medicine for my DPM and Adelphi University for my MBA before I tried out of necessity of running a multiple office practice as the CEO to do certificate programs at The executive education aspects of Wharton, Cornell, Columbia and Harvard. Now I applied and was accepted to Cornell for my MHA so that I can educate myself and implement that knowledge to better understand public health and healthcare so that my business can evolve into a compassionate and successful healthcare system.
Frankie Cantu
Frankie Cantu 11 meses atrás
I just got accepted to Harvard and the journey has been long. I missed my grandma's death, missed my own birthdays to study, and let my dad die on his death bed alone. I'm starting to think was all this sacrifice really worth just the chance to be accepted. This is just the beginning and I'm feeling like I'll lose myself if I go since I've always lost most of me just for the opportunity. Imma flip a coin
Anon
Anon 4 meses atrás
If you didn't accept going to Harvard then you really did waste the sacrifices you've made
Alexander Tan
Alexander Tan 5 meses atrás
Sorry for your loss, but just do your best in Harvard. Dont compete with others, compete with your own instead. Give yourself a challenge to achieve within your ability. Adjust your expectation to your own ability. You will find that more fulfilling and happy. And your happiness is the only thing your late father and grandma would want. dont give up! you can do it!
Geo
Geo 11 meses atrás
@Ajin Poudel sorry it came out lile that xD
Ajin Poudel
Ajin Poudel 11 meses atrás
@Geo Bruh you just had to do me like that LOL. But yeah ur right.
Geo
Geo 11 meses atrás
What's gone is gone, you cannot reverse time. If you can endure the pressure and hardships in Harvard, perservere through it. If you feel like you're missing out on too much of your life, to get these grades, then F*** it, drop out and design your life the way you feel like. It is your own life, and you make your own decisions. Best of luck to you, and remember that it's never too late, and that grades aren't everything. Life is temporary, make the BEST ouf of it :)
Kent Tran
Kent Tran 4 meses atrás
This guy's voice sounds like he endured so much stress, pressure, and depression to do well academically at Harvard. The academics at Harvard sounds really hard from this guy's perspective. If the college academics at Harvard is too hard, you can always transfer to a less rigorous school, where you can actually handle their academics. It seems like the most realistic thing to do.
Ana Mendoza
Ana Mendoza 9 meses atrás
He could've been talking about me this whole time and I'd be nodding along, agreeing with every sentiment. I study at National Taiwan University and went from consistent A+ and gpa of 3.9 to failing many classes, just barely passing others, and overall having a gpa of around 2.3. I've def been suicidal. It's not easy to accept that you're no longer among the smartest people in a class and that they're all leaving you behind, because you're in way over your head. If I graduate I swear I'll never aim this high again lol
No No
No No Anos atrás
Real world doesn't care about grades. Just skills.
eunice
eunice 4 meses atrás
this right here
Smâil Châli
Smâil Châli 4 meses atrás
@Think Critically ok
Think Critically
Think Critically 4 meses atrás
@tiizzen lucky you..but thats just confirmation bias
Think Critically
Think Critically 4 meses atrás
@alin alin Skills exist whether or not the are acknowledged. Skills in excess of ones gatekeepers not only exist but are often not just dis acknowledged but suppressed. Hierarchy is necessarily controlling and insecure, else it would not seek to force conformity and instilling of control. This by simple logic means objective measures (born of hierarchy) are no objective but rather objectivist. This doesn't even address the facts that people with zero malicious intent or insecurity will still fail to recognize both merit and flaw and people make those determinations, that hierarchy is supremacist, that it is supressive, that even the best test is presumptive of what people imagine they know and by format disallows refutation except by those who already agree with it..gatekeepers(fundamentally antiscience based claim of objective truth, religion)...shall i go on?
alin alin
alin alin 4 meses atrás
The fact that people believe you can magically possess one but not the other is a problem. Objective grades and scores are correlated with skill level. The knowledge you possess, that is measured as best as possible through tests and grades, is the foundation for your skills.
Rodrigo Rodriguez
Rodrigo Rodriguez 11 meses atrás
I had the benefit of a lot of friends at different colleges, especially tutoring students, and I didn't finish my bachelor's degree until I was thirty, so I have the unusual advantage of some informed perspective about college. Anyway despite some qualifiers elsewhere in this comments section, I do want to voice my appreciation for the video and its very useful and very neglected perspective. Thank you.
Woodsgump
Woodsgump 11 meses atrás
This hit me very hard. Right now I'm in his shoes wondering where I'm gonna go after Senior year of college. I've been having some existential crises and I'd wonder where I would go next in my life. Counseling after counseling, I had to disregard and stop faking by telling my professor, parents, and everybody around me that I'm gonna "have a job". Also that story about John sent chills down my spine because I think I remember seeing this video once before, just can't recall. Yeah, I've dealt with depression and even contemplated suicide with my thoughts. It's not worth it, I know I can make it in this world. Just... everything is so struggling right now with the economy, politics, religion, academics, social events, etc.
The Cooking Frog
The Cooking Frog 11 meses atrás
I really appreciate him making this Video, because I am a 12-Year-old and Harvard is the dream school my parents want me to go. But I am really bad at school to be honest. Even thought about suicide a lot of times. Not because of my Grades, No because of my parents. Seeing them and my friends, feeling like I am a disappointment, faking being happy in school, it all had me at my end. But I figured a way out and not gonna lie, Harvard is still my dream school, but I know I can be also go to an other school and do the same and have the mentality for the world. Now I find Harvard might be something I might learn other mentalities that I need, but making my Parents proud is my biggest wish. I know it might sound like a lot for a 12 yo, but that's how I feel. So what i want too say is there might be more of kids like me and i want to tell that is really not wrong to be bad at school. You'll get your opportunity.
ireland doesn't exist
ireland doesn't exist 6 meses atrás
i am a bit older than 12 now, but i understand how you feel. i felt the same way when i was a child. i hope you feel better soon, and i know it is hard to realise, but your parent’s approval isn’t everything. you can love your parents and also realise that you need to do things for yourself sometimes. i really hope everything turns out okay, there’s nothing wrong with not doing exceptional at school, and i hope you learn to love life. do not end it, please.
Mua'dh
Mua'dh 5 meses atrás
This resonates alot with life during medical school no matter how hard you try you will still get Bs & Cs sometimes D. Stress is immersurable continuous even post graduation and for the rest of your life you are expected to be on 120% performance all the time
Cy4nPaladin_
Cy4nPaladin_ 2 anos atrás
You don’t have to go to Harvard to be a genius.
Kyle
Kyle 8 meses atrás
@Yashaswi Kulshreshtha ok? U do know some jobs require a degree right?
Passion
Passion 8 meses atrás
@skrt skrt I wanna drop out at junior year🤓🤣
Mihailo Pesic
Mihailo Pesic 9 meses atrás
You have to be genius to go to Harvard.
Vale Huber
Vale Huber 11 meses atrás
@Kujaa quite the contrary, no one is born smart, we r constructed and created and learn to
Vale Huber
Vale Huber 11 meses atrás
@GWT i dont think only for his disability, lots of other things too
Brian Abbott
Brian Abbott 3 meses atrás
This was a great talk. Thank you. Stress is a clarifying agent. It makes us better. It is the select function. The gauntlet - a better you waits on the other side of stress. Learn to love the feeling.
Scott Bagan
Scott Bagan 5 meses atrás
Feel for him and those in the same spot. Speak up! Say your stressed out! Don't let society bring you down. Shine bright!
plyric
plyric 3 meses atrás
I remember making all straight A's throughout grade school, middle school and high school, all the honors and clubs and leaderships and whatnot that I did, just to hit college and get straight C's my first semester. The depression and pressure to succeed were extreme. I remember friends committing suicide and dropping out of college. I remember considering suicide and dropping out of college myself, that I had fooled myself into thinking I might be good enough. Colleges call this condition "weeding out the unfit students". Looking back, I see it the same way that Alex sees it. Although I didn't attend an Ivy League school, I also graduated college with the "Ivy League" mentality of mental toughness, perseverance, confidence, passion and social responsibility. Today, years later, this mentality helps me foster my personal business and entrepreneurship. No matter what you may "fake" to others, ALWAYS be true to yourself.
Hale
Hale 8 meses atrás
This reminds me of Magnet Schools. I somehow managed to get into my state's best school as it was actually REALLY hard to get into. At first, I was really happy since I was actually in the top 6 to get selected and literally thought that the difficulty of this school wouldn't be bothersome to me. I genuinely lost my emotions the second I started that school. Every day, go to Panera after school to study until 7pm. Come home, and study even more. If not, wake up as early as 5 am and continue studying. The worst part about this is that some of my friends had clubs in the morning as early as 4 am to 6. My grades started dropping one by one to Fs; which I never encountered any grade lower than A- or B+. My mental breakdowns stopped just 3 weeks later I started school as I normalized and named myself as the "idiot" one. In the reviews, the school is demonstrated as one of the BEST schools in the country, or that the school is amazing. It's not. Although I got along with people, the school itself destroyed me. Today I go to an ordinary school that I actually have a really good social life in and ranked top 5 in my grade. I think what matters is that you get to be WHO you are rather than some high school taking away your teenage life.
Wages Sin
Wages Sin 11 meses atrás
I went to a top university to become a “doctor” and end up being a “ nurse aid”…I saw my college class mate in the real world as a doctor as I was working as a nurse aid… I was embarrassed …but I carry on and kept my nurse aid job..I’m starting a family soon and life goes on. In my 20 plus year as a nurse aid…all doctors and nurses respect my views and me. I’ve realized like you siad…not everyone can be doctors or nurses..and WE DAMN NEED A GOOD NURSE AID🙌🏼👍🏽👍🏽
Bob Olh
Bob Olh 4 dias atrás
Just curious how did u end up as a nurse
Sushi Lover
Sushi Lover 3 meses atrás
I'm a Registered Nurse myself but heck yeah, having a good nurse aid working beside us (Registered Nurses) makes so much difference.. You all don't know how much you guys contribute in our job.. You all are wonderful.
Vister
Vister 3 meses atrás
Everyone has his own journey and purposes in life. It's wonderful enough when one finds and recognises his journey. Glad you have found yours and enjoy every bit of it & take pride in doing it. Keep up the good work!
INFJ-n-BI
INFJ-n-BI 11 meses atrás
This kinda makes me laugh. All the "smart" highschoolers I knew had this exact vision of themselves but it was way off; they weren't the brightest people, or the leaders they believed themselves to be. They were usually excessively angry under the hood and I valued other people's skills and experiences far more than their numbers. Don't be afraid to fail in a system that fails you. Don't define yourself by someone else's arbitrary version of success, cuz they'll be dead soon and so will you. Make yourself happy, you're the only one that can.
INFJ-n-BI
INFJ-n-BI 11 meses atrás
@Jamssy anytime👍
Jamssy
Jamssy 11 meses atrás
@INFJ-n-BI damn, I've never related to someone this much before! Thank you for the advices!
INFJ-n-BI
INFJ-n-BI 11 meses atrás
@Jamssy same, I'm an artist. Though I performed well in school I never valued it as much as people who ran the full 12 year gambit since I was homeschooled for a long time. I tutored sometimes since my advanced courses had odd schedules and that's when I learned there's a lot less difference between us all than people like to admit, it just takes the right teacher to bring it out. I believe talent is not as big a factor as school would have you think, and that with the right motivation, practice, and guidance everyone is capable of excelling at what they devote themselves to. Keep up with your art; it is very good for mental health which I find gets harder to manage with age ✌️
Jamssy
Jamssy 11 meses atrás
I think the "smart" students you speak of are obnoxious and spoiled ones who believe they're "the best" at everything because they got good grades. They probably don't even have hobbies or any hands at arts. Wait 'til you see them being "smart" isn't special at all. I'd predict they'd hate everyone for being smarter than them. I was considered a "smart" kid at my elementary school. And I was defined by my grades. I' m not bragging, but back then lessons came easy to me (except in Math) and I never had to study. Now that I'm in highschool, oh boy.. It doesn't make it better that I'm in a class where everyone is literally amazing at everything and now I can't show off my "advanced writing skills" anymore. Also, if you ask the kids who had high grades in my previous school why they study, the main reason is parents. This is why I'm stuck having to keep good grades to please my parents, when really, I love doing art.
Orion
Orion 7 meses atrás
Major props to whoever is running this account for keeping up to date with comments and being supportive for people sharing their personal experiences.
Scott D
Scott D 6 meses atrás
I have been working at Harvard now for 7 years. I was told by some other guys that there were in recent years that there were suicides on Campus. It’s sad! People need to realize that having the best grades and going to the best Schools doesn’t mean you are better and that being a lower grade student doesn’t make you a failure. I hate how parents make their children feel that way. I talk to a lot of students and a lot seem to really enjoy their time here. Life is stressful no matter the job. Glad he is telling his story though.
Todd
Todd 4 meses atrás
I have several friends who went to grad school at elite universities and they all uniformly had the opposite experience. The application process was extremely difficult and selective, but the curriculum was far less challenging.
m._
m._ Anos atrás
everybody talks about how hard it is getting into Ivy leagues but no one talks about the struggle after you get in..... Thank you for this perspective! I gotta go show this to my parents now!
Kinsey Lise
Kinsey Lise 4 meses atrás
@Peremious Flameheart Haha you don't have to worry. One of the smartest people I know also goes "hehe funny number" at 69. Maturity is about upholding your values, go ahead and enjoy funny number lol
Peremious Flameheart
Peremious Flameheart 4 meses atrás
@Kinsey Lise 69th like. In reference to what you are saying, I feel very immature, but it is something that makes me happy, and that's what you are talking about right now. So I think I'm good.
Kinsey Lise
Kinsey Lise 4 meses atrás
@TheBatugan77 ? I know I responded a few times but people asked questions so that's sort of expected, I'm not sure I get what you're trying to achieve here.
m._
m._ 4 meses atrás
@Borna Božić Kundrata You're gonna do wonderfully, don't worry!
Borna Božić Kundrata
Borna Božić Kundrata 4 meses atrás
I'm in a ivy league high i'm legit dying
A W
A W 7 meses atrás
A brilliant video on upbringing. Parents need to realise they can’t have it both ways. Pressuring someone throughout their whole education life-basically their whole life :) on studying harder,harder and harder will not help you in the long run. That kid will not know the true meaning of love and happiness from you. He will do things he probably doesn’t like to get your approval which will make him emotionally a very incapable person or simply lie to you and become the victim.
Werd One
Werd One 5 meses atrás
I was once told by a wise person that it’s not about where you get your education, it’s what you do with it.
john-carlos ynostroza
john-carlos ynostroza 5 meses atrás
I went to Stanford and I was a history major. I would say that it was pretty easy to get a B... hard to get an A... hard to get a C... you had to basically slack to get a C ... you definitely had to put in the work to get an A... Now, that was as a history major- I will say that my friends that were in the sciences, mathematics, and even economics had a very different experience... I would work for a couple of hours per-day and they would basically dedicate their entire life to studying and be lucky to come out with a low B or C sometimes...
sariany
sariany 10 meses atrás
I got accepted into the best university in my country, everyone was happy, I cried when my dad said how proud he was. I applied to a scholarship since I can’t afford that uni, I’ve been preparing for this scholarship for a while, and then, there was a change in the rules and I no longer applied for the 10 extra points, it’s is a high selective Scholarship so of course I did not get it. My dad passed away 2 months after that, I was broken, I still am. I am now preparing for an entrance exam to get into a “good school”, it’s definitely not as good as the other one, but my family needs me right now, specially my mom. Alex, your TEDtalk has clarified things to me. University does not define success, and I believe I already have the Ivy League mentality, so I’ll take that exam, get in and work hard to get an amazing GPA, graduate as a Law & Political Science major and fulfill my dream of becoming a Diplomat and serving my country, thank you so much
sariany
sariany 5 meses atrás
@ireland doesn't exist hey there! thank you for your comment! I just got the news that I got in for the Law and Political Science Program!! I couldn’t be happier, and I’m sure my dad is as well, wherever he is at right now
ireland doesn't exist
ireland doesn't exist 6 meses atrás
i hope that you are doing well! i really do.
sariany
sariany 10 meses atrás
@I have shit on my head thank you so much, I’ll do my best!!
I have shit on my head
I have shit on my head 10 meses atrás
Go off queen!!! You can do thiss!!
Baffling Documentaries
I'm 27, went to a crappy unpopular college and got a bachelor's in computer science. Now I work at NASA as a cyber security engineer, don't have any student debts and own a condo. So please think again before applying to an Ivy league school. -- Correction, I don't own the condo, I have a mortgage, but you get the point. Also I just finished a Master's in Cybersecurity at a better school
Lynnet Opara
Lynnet Opara 11 meses atrás
hallelujah
RS232
RS232 Anos atrás
@Gary Ortolano exactly my thoughts CISSP or OSCP are know to be some prestige accomplishment in Cyber Security NOT some random school degree
RS232
RS232 Anos atrás
huh? masters ?🤡 you do know that Certification are the highest prestige on IT field not some random school degrees. and it requires multi skill set that you will never learn on school
The Big Brother
The Big Brother Anos atrás
good work bro
iiRaiYen
iiRaiYen 4 meses atrás
8:55 A masterful build-up all to punch you in the gut with reality. I’m no genius, nor will I ever find myself accomplishing a quarter of what this man, or any man and woman can who is eligible to attend these prestigious schools. I’m a high-school dropout with an equivalent attending a community college, going for my associates degree in MET. This doesn’t put much pressure on me, so I couldn’t imagine what John had to feel and be put through for him to make that decision. It’s harsh, and unfair for these great minds to endure this conditioning, though it is why we have our advancements and why we only have to deal with first-world problems.
Ice Kold Killa
Ice Kold Killa 11 meses atrás
I just always remind myself Tom Morello went to Harvard and he formed Rage Against The Machine. That didn't come from Harvard yet he created alongside his band mates, one of the biggest bands of the 90s. With a strong message in every song. There's purpose and fight, will, freedom, questions, answers and more, all in their songs. They teach people a lot, open their eyes and ears and hopefully get them to do more research. Not many Harvard students ended up doing this. So if someone can become cooler (subjective, I know) and do more without it, then it's probably not all that big as they make it seem.
beneth emmanuel
beneth emmanuel 19 dias atrás
Wow… this is really insightful! I’m currently in one of the top universities in Nigeria, and I’m already transferring to Havard. Watching this sends shivers already down my spine. I don’t like competition, but Havard and all that I’ve heard and researched about it, projects it competitiveness. Phewww!! I hope God see me through this uncertain journey.
Guillermo
Guillermo 8 meses atrás
It is essential to get over that idea of elitist education. Going to ivy League is not better than any other university, or no university at all, as long as we do whatever it takes to live a happy life and serve our communities. It's disgusting to see how we build societies around elitism.
WarMike_1
WarMike_1 2 meses atrás
What matters most is your skills and your competence at what you do. While a top university is not required to get that, it can certainly help.
🦋 Esra 🦋
🦋 Esra 🦋 2 anos atrás
Every student who is working hard has to watch this for them to know their not alone. I got accepted for a PhD four times in one of the best schools in the world and couldnt afford it. I tried everything i could but found no way to pay for my studies. I would think of this dream almost EVEERYDAY for six years until i finally won a scholorship a month ago. Work hard, set your goals and NEVER give up
marq
marq Anos atrás
Thank you for your speech and I am waiting for a scholarship because I got in to a really good college but I can’t affront it wish me luck
K S
K S Anos atrás
Congrazs
Nur
Nur Anos atrás
Hayatta başarılar Esra
Shafa Salsabila Karim
thank you very much
Thomas Rebotier
Thomas Rebotier Anos atrás
The best schools in the world fund every PhD. That's why they are the best.
Dee
Dee 5 meses atrás
I can relate to this too much... I got into a top college in my country ( it was my dream college) but now I am struggling 🥲 now I am in my 1st semester and everyone in my class is topper (but not me ) 😔
Kou Yang
Kou Yang 11 meses atrás
The reality is that highschool should be teaching students to figure out what drives them to succeed. Why are they trying to get that good grade? Will that still be the case when they get into college? Highschool was a breeze for me. I lost my drive and motivation about my 2nd year in college. Got put on probation, left came back failed again. College is about self discovery. People forget that and we're pressured to graduate in 4-5 years when actually most people graduate in 6-7years. Im much happier where i am now at a different school in a different program. You gotta find what clicks for you and what drives you or else you'll just be lost and wondering why you're trying to get this degree.
maxx Hanley
maxx Hanley 11 meses atrás
During the great Depression, my father dropped out of high school. Later in life he worked his way into management in a large corporation. When he retired he was managing 3 departments and was well respected! He was replaced by 2 men with Masters degrees!
Mike the Mechanic
Mike the Mechanic 4 meses atrás
Nice. My mom was a Director of nursing. She was a LPN. They told her her position would be filled by someone with a RN and someone with a Masters in Business from now on.
English Learners Here
English Learners Here 2 meses atrás
Thanks for sharing your experiences with us, Alex! This will be an eye-opener for a lot of people!
qubDev
qubDev Anos atrás
i was the type of student who freaked at anything lower than B+ in high school, but now that I'm in uni anything above a D is a win for me lol
Capitán Tops
Capitán Tops 9 meses atrás
@AiBat yes, @Lt-Kregorov is a genius, i was amazed of what he said about his college years, you are an inspiration.
Fabian Daja
Fabian Daja 11 meses atrás
Weak
Anurag Singh
Anurag Singh 11 meses atrás
Damn you are so cute 😍
davemuan
davemuan 11 meses atrás
@Lt-Kregorov thanks for the tip man
CodePlaysGames
CodePlaysGames 11 meses atrás
And here I freak put on any thing less that 90% or A grade. I am so scared of university and I know its going to be very, very difficult.
George Fan
George Fan 7 meses atrás
The truth people often overlook is that your mental health is more important than getting the top grade. Sometimes you get so lost in the pursuit of your prestigious degree that you forget what you truly love, because you’re no longer happy in the process. In schools like Harvard, everyone is a winner at the beginning. As time goes on there will be way more failures than successes and the ones that fail will be devastated to the point of depression, because nobody came here to be the bottom of the class. So go for what brings you happiness, not simply a prestigious degree. Most high-school leavers have no idea what life at a college like Harvard will be and just label every Ivy their “dream school”.
Crazyman GloCrazy
Crazyman GloCrazy 4 meses atrás
Crazy hearing about this and when I was at my Junior college playing football I had fun and classes were a breeze and my social life sleep and football were so in sync due to less stress from school lol
random techmarine
random techmarine 7 meses atrás
Its not worth all the late nights, the countless monsters and redbulls, the stress, etc. Its not worth it if you are not happy and are having mental health problems Find something you wanna do, something that makes you happy and go for it It wont be easy i can tell you that but that can be said for anything Like me i want to go into trade school and become an engineer but sadly my highschool sucks right now and thanks to family matters my freshmen year sucked to say the least Im a sophomore almost junior having to make up so much i feel stressed but i still push through cause i know it aint the end for me I've had a good long look behind the curtain to know being stressed out about this stuff is not worth it Trust me it aint
Shikshya
Shikshya 4 meses atrás
Iam so glad that he shared behind the curtains of fantasy. Its everybody dream to be in harvard everybody craves for it but reality is different struggle is also more than other universities and yes the amount of pressure you have especially when you are from different nationality it quite took a lot from you. I have also had a very painful high school days but i am glad that i pass those moments and iam trying to do better now .SO THANK YOU FOR THE SPEAKER ALEX FOR BEING BRAVE TO SHARE YOUR SIDE OF STORY. I USED TO THINK IWAS SUCH A LOSER OF MY FAMILY THAT I COULDNT MEET MY PARENTS AND MY OWN EXPECTATIONS THIS VIDEO IS SO SPECIAL TO ME NOW ONWARDS .I WIL SAVE THIS VIDEO IN MY PLAYLIST BECAUSE IT GIVES ME COMFORT BY LETTING ME KNOW THAT ITS OKAY TO STRUGGLE WITH YOUR GRADES NEW FRIENDS AND UNIVERSITIES AND ITS NORMAL TO BE ANXIED WHILE DEALING WITH THIS PHASE THANK YOU 😊😊
George Stern
George Stern Anos atrás
This does not only apply to Harvard, but all Ivy League schools and any of the top 50 schools in the world.
A Olvaar
A Olvaar Anos atrás
@Chen Carson I Learn something every day
Chen Carson
Chen Carson Anos atrás
@A Olvaar but U of PA is an Ivy League school though…
D H
D H Anos atrás
@A Olvaar sorry i should have clarified...california state
A Olvaar
A Olvaar Anos atrás
@D H U of PA 96%, do a Google, I went to a30% school, limited seating jourior year
MoniizMuffinz
MoniizMuffinz 4 meses atrás
Soon, I'm getting into 7th grade. My parents said they want me to go to Harvard when I'm older. I told them that's impossible but they said I have good grades and should be able to achieve going there. I'm overwhelmed with grades, self-image, and my friend's mental health. I'm scared of what they'll think about me if I ever say no, I'm not doing well. Just know it's okay not to be feeling well but never okay to hide it.
Izzy playz
Izzy playz 4 meses atrás
That's a lot to hold up for a young kid like you. We all have our goals and aspirations but sometimes you should remind yourself, "why should I get good grades, maintain my image and try to help my friend and support them?" Try to narrow down your excuses and find the answer to these questions. Plus, it's okay to put a line between you and others, it's okay to make time for yourself not trying to worry on how you must act and be around people, you can't multitask everything in your life while doing well off on your own problems, it's okay to be selfish for your own good. Though it might be difficult, it's a skill that'll do you good in the future. Hope this helps and good luck! ^^
Bryan Thales
Bryan Thales 4 meses atrás
It's incredible how, everywhere on the globe, a lot of people are experiencing the same things, go through the same processes, the same feelings, etc. I've managed to enter my "Dream School" through HARD WORK and I was so proud when i've received my letter of acceptation. The things at school were tough, it was really hard but I could still managed it. When extra-scholars things happened, it broke my balance and i was STRUGGLING HARD. I've failed this year, quit the school and was really depressing during one year while keeping the same smile in front of my friends and parents... Now, i'm at another school, i'm a internship away from graduation and I'm still regretting the fact that I didn't keep up there. But I'm fine, it was a cool experience and rn i'm focus about who I am, what I'll be and it's OK thay way.
spartan68
spartan68 6 meses atrás
I see fixed mindsets in him and he's projecting them onto the youth. You should absolutely go to your dream school over a school that "fits your ability" because intelligence can be developed. It isn't static. That's what a growth mindset is and he's projecting his fixed mindset onto these kids. He's got an interesting story, but bad advice. Go to school because beliefs and standards are contagious. You want to surround yourself with the most outstanding people you can. Don't fear failure because it's an opportunity to grow and your effort and attitude determines your ability. And go to school for the right reasons if you want to ensure your success because you don't want to for mainly external reasons like money, fame, sex, status, or parents' approval. Go for a purpose that you're curious and passionate about; one where you could use your strengths to help with a grand challenge in the world. Go because you've found your ikigai and the school will provide the network and education that will accelerate the impact you want to have on the world.
M N
M N 5 meses atrás
Great topic. Don't forget that university success is mostly about extreme fitting in and not about authenticity, toughness, competitiveness, learning by heart a lot, race... nothing much intelligent and sophisticated and unique. Practically, it is much better not to be a super success because it may mean that you are actually the most intelligent one. The most intelligent people of all time did not finish university: Nikola Tesla, Steve Jobs ...
Angel Soto
Angel Soto 3 anos atrás
Nothing is impossible. I struggled my whole life, was kicked out of my house at a young age, had $15 left in my bank account, had to find a minimum wage job, work for 5 hard years nonstop and go from paycheck to paycheck just to be able to purchase a data plan which enabled me to write this review and tell you that I have never been to Harvard
ozmaorigrl
ozmaorigrl 2 anos atrás
hahahaha...winning comment!!!
Jay
Jay 2 anos atrás
Angel Soto 😂😂😂😭
hding98
hding98 2 anos atrás
Angel Soto It’s too late for you to study at Harvard now. If you must have something to do with Harvard, you’ll have to settle teaching language art at Harvard.
Gary Ortolano
Gary Ortolano 2 anos atrás
Good data plans are sooooooo hard to come by too.Congratulations.If it matters at all...I'M proud of you.
Phil
Phil 2 anos atrás
Made my day
Jonathan Pho
Jonathan Pho 8 meses atrás
I have mixed feelings about this Ted Talk. Even though my father, his his brothers, and cousin went to Harvard, it was only my cousin who regretted the entire Harvard experience because she only went to the HBS due to its reputation only. She thought the entire Harvard experience as cutthroat and very miserable. As to the Asian pressure to succeed, you can either go two ways: try to succeed and please your parents and at the same time feel miserable your whole life (and kill your parents....), or not try to please your parents and be happy and live. I chose the latter!
Kris Kraian
Kris Kraian 2 meses atrás
Finally I came to a video that I’m so relate about studying at best places I went to the best school of my country and I’m 100% agree with everything you said. Every single feeling. I needed help, but I was so afraid that I would not be good enough and how my school and my classmates would look at me? I had depression just as a don’t know almost everyone probably? This is the side most of people have never heard and thought about the best educational places and the reality of being always good enough to be called “the best” OH MY GOD the school of your dream is called a dream school because it’s above your abilities This is genius
White Dragon
White Dragon 4 meses atrás
One of the most inportant thing is to realize where your limits are. Going to school, I met people who were way smarter than me. I was smart but not enough. That is OK as I did the best that I could with what I had to work with and my situation. No regrets. Dude its OK to not be so smart.
Jake
Jake 9 meses atrás
I’m dealing with this right now at Missouri State. Our college of agriculture is extremely hard but I put on a face in front of my parents like schools going good when in reality I’m completely lost.
lukas groebner
lukas groebner 4 meses atrás
I don't study in one of the top universities in the world, but I am currently enrolled in a really hard university. It's called Unibz (Free University of Bolzano) and it has the highest ranking grade in Italy among all others, both private and public. It's ranked at second place in the ranking for economics. What I really find great about it is its multicultural identity. It is a real trilingual university and offers its services in a trilingual environment. But let me tell you, it's really hard. I usually study the whole day until 11 pm. I have to take a lot of sacrifices, such as abandoning my hobbies, my sport and other social activities. I hope I will go through it!!
Eleonor VonCarter
Eleonor VonCarter 11 meses atrás
That's, at a biggest scale, the same kind of expectation there is on us in my high school, considered the best in the city. The problem is that nothing works as it should, you are stressed here because you have to give up on sleep and social life and most of the students here, like me, struggles to go on because we are not genius.
Victorel Petrovich
Victorel Petrovich 10 meses atrás
Very good! I think he's speaking the truth, relevant for many dreaming of top schools.
Iman bahyia
Iman bahyia 10 meses atrás
I'm studing at what you can call an ivy league university (medicine), i must add that I'm an international student and got an early admission accidentally bcz somebody else dropped out. What happened was, I went from a A+ student to having C in best case scenarios and F in some. I fought so hard! Now I get A- but the journey that I needed to get there broke me to pieces. Now I suffer from anxiety. I suffered from depression for 2 years. And I have hardly have any confidence left. Some look at me with wow she's amazing. And the only voice in my head goes:"not enough". It has been such a long time that I have slept at night and actually felt satisfied. Don't get me wrong, I overcame many struggles and I am sure I will overcome this. But when I look back, I wish I stayed that naive and easy going person I was.
SSJ400 Buledi
SSJ400 Buledi 4 meses atrás
That is so true. I can't stop thinking about I am not good enough at what is supposed to be my specialty. I try to be more kind to me but this voice that keeps telling me to get better never stops talking. I pretend to everbody that i'm fine but I'm Putting my self under a lot of pressure
KurooTsuki
KurooTsuki 9 meses atrás
nah same, im nearly through med school in australia and i work so many jobs and volunteer so much and i still feel like im not achieving enough. External validation will never heal a generation of people hearing a constant rhetoric of productivity and self improvement.
Stella Rae
Stella Rae 7 meses atrás
i went to UCLA for my first 2 years of school, but by my third year it just didnt make sense to go there anymore. it's ridiculously expensive and they wanted me to pay a ridiculous amount in loans. the first two years the loans werent too bad, but by the third they were expecting my parents to pay double what they did for the first and second year (my parents and i both take out loans so that i can go to school). i realized i wanted to become a teacher and knew that i didnt need to go to the fanciest school around to do that. especially with wages so low, i want to spend a very little amount on my university. ucla also just wasnt conducive to my health at all. i'd say 98% of the people i met there/interacted with were also struggling immensely, having frequent breakdowns, were casually suicidal, and/or just completely demoralized. we need to change our education system, from pre school through college, because the things we expect from students (especially at university level) is just absolutely ridiculous. we're getting burnt out earlier and earlier. we need to fix this.
Alpaca
Alpaca 5 meses atrás
I just barely graduated from university, according to UniRank the university that i went to is ranked 4610 world wide. So what i'm trying to say is that i can relate to Alex's story.
Alexander Tan
Alexander Tan 5 meses atrás
I was not from Ivy-League university, but I can totally understand what he has gone through. I was doing very well academically in primary school, and ended up in one of the top secondary school in my country. And somehow, I still able to do well academically. Despite having social awkwardness, I was still well known in my batch as sometimes I scored excellent in certain subjects while others failed in that subject. But things changes as I enter university. Even though the university is not of Ivy-League, I was surrounded by the best of the best in their high school. And for the first time in my life, I almost failed in one of my module. As much as I aimed to score high, I knew at that time, its not possible. So instead, I reduced my expectation and ensure myself not to fail in any modules. And I did it. I graduated in chemical engineering without failing in any modules. I was still able to do and graduated with a PhD later, and now working as a Postdoctoral Researcher. Meanwhile, some of my primary and secondary classmates who didnt do well academically, become more successful and wealthier than me. I was puzzled and analyzed what make them different from me? Turns out instead, we had the same mentality but different path and goal. And that is: determination and never give up. Hence I came out a quote: " Getting good grades doesnt make you a billionaire." It doesnt matter whether you can study or not. What is matter is to find the right environment for yourself, and then work hard to be successful. Being a postdoctoral researcher is not easy, but somehow is the right environment for me, and thats how I can succeed in career. But if I switched role with my friend who is wealthy as he is good in sales and business, I dont think I can be successful in sales and business, while I dont think he will be successful in doing research. This is something that I hope every parents, especially Asian parents, will finally understand.
cg0825
cg0825 4 meses atrás
Not just Ivy League schools either. Imagine being the first in your family to go to college. Imagine the first in your family to go to grad school. I don't have to imagine. All of a sudden my family thought I knew everything because they had no concept of college as none of them ever went.
momo pimko
momo pimko Anos atrás
The most successful person I ever met was my great grandpa. He never learned how to read and worked fields all his life, but he found happiness in all the things that God allotted to him.
Siphesihle Gumede
Siphesihle Gumede 5 meses atrás
This is both deep, meaningful and beautiful. Bless you, your great grandpa and family
Achira Dasgupta
Achira Dasgupta 5 meses atrás
❣️❣️❣️❣️❣️❣️
Lisa
Lisa 6 meses atrás
That’s beautiful, that’s real success🥰🙏🏻
he was
he was 6 meses atrás
Praise God! Only he can give us true peace and joy.
Worchan Shinglai
Worchan Shinglai 8 dias atrás
I'm from IIM. I can so much relate of what u said. I've always been one of the top performer in school but after coming to IIM, I started to get C grade which I never received in my life.
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