I was at my alma mater – Yishun Town Secondary School yesterday, witnessing another batch of graduands receiving their first major exam results slip, while I do new media coverage of the event via a Facebook Page. As a Singaporean youth, this is where one starts to experience a taste of failure or success. For the first time in his/her life.
As someone who has had taken the examination in 1997, I often emphasize this: “No doubt academic excellence is important, exam results are not everything in life. They don’t mean anything. It is not the end of the world if you don’t score well. If you buck up later, anything is possible – in terms of life achievements, you might even surpass that best student in school.”
That nasty feeling of failure can be very overwhelming, crushing one’s self-confidence. I knew it because it happened to me. I repeated once. It took me 2 years to overcome that feeling when I was in ITE Bishan.
It is about strong will-power, I guess. You just have to pick yourself up, know your strength areas, keep on chanting to yourself, saying “I will not give up…I can do better than others the next time round.” Yes, for those who don’t score well, PLEASE DON’T GIVE UP. Reflect and learn from your mistakes, and start working on your weak areas. It is okay to take a longer time to reach your destination. Keep going. Don’t stop there. Ignore what naysayers said. Think positive.
As long as one is hungry for success, stay humble, help others as he/she perseveres, yes, he or she may not be the best performing student now during schooling years but that individual whom you perceived to be “stupid”, “lousy” or “failure for life” could become the next BIG boss or public figure some 20 years later. Nothing is absolute!
Look at Bill Gates or Steve Jobs. Need I say more?
Standing from the perspective of a former ITE graduate, I am particularly concerned or worried about top performing students becoming snobbish and too elitist in their mindset and the way how they handle people or matters. I hope my worries are unfound.
Pardon me for saying this – To me, “elitism” is a dirty word.
Nevertheless, to students who score outstanding results, this is what I would like to say: “Congratulations. You have had worked hard to deserve such good results. But never ever look down or pre-judge someone who may not have scored very good academic results like yourself. For you may not know what he or she may become in future.”
Anything is possible in this world.
Many people among us could be hidden diamonds or late-bloomers..
Our mass media should highlight more inspiring stories of latebloomers who has beaten all odds to become who they want to be.