This I Believe

Holly - cassville, New York
Entered on September 5, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in treating others how you would want to be treated.

My first summer job after my freshmen year of college was anything but glamorous and exciting; however, it taught me more than anything I had ever experienced. I was officially part of a cleaning crew at one of the most prestigious golf courses in my area. The first and one of the most important rules that I had to learn was that I needed to be invisible to the club members. My boss’s first words were “Always keep your head down and never speak unless spoken too.” The club members thought of us as nothing, a waste of space and air. I had never felt so degraded in my entire life, they didn’t know me but judged me because of my job and for this I believe in treating others how you wish to be treated. Just the simple act of acknowledging we were in the room would have made the situation much more comfortable.

Everyone has had a bad experience with service, whether it was a slow waitress or a cashier who was still learning. These experiences test our patients and temper. But the thing is everyone deserves respect and just think how you might feel if you were in their shoes. You don’t know what they are going through. A task may seem menial but it is still important. If the world didn’t have the cleaning crews, waitresses or cashiers, how would it continue to run?

No matter what age, race or income bracket, people should value others as equals. As a student at Syracuse University, I witness wealth and privilege everyday. However, several of my classes have taken me off the campus to surrounding public schools that do not have adequate funding, buildings or supplies for their students. During one of my classes, a fellow student discussed how she was not willing to go back and student teach at one of the schools because it was too dirty and she felt unsafe. She felt that she deserved to go to a better school. I was taken aback by this situation. Everyone deserves an education and you can not take it out on the students because they go to a poor school. It isn’t the students’ fault that they cannot afford private school tuition, why should we turn our backs on them because of their situation? Don’t they deserve the same opportunities that we have? If it were us in their place we would want a better learning environment, and we certainly wouldn’t want someone to decide not to teach us because our school was not up to their standards.

In the long run some bad experiences in my life have taught me to treat people better. I always make sure to make eye contact with everyone and at the least smile. People deserve to be acknowledged and respected. It is not a difficult task but can make all the difference in someone’s day.