Andre Alexander Noble became one of the 12M Loans Scholarship favorites for his original ideas outlined in his essay and video. We are happy to reward his individuality with a $50 prize. Read Andy’s simple tips on how to be helpful while young and try to apply them in practice.
There are five simple things a young person can do.
1. A Young Person should invest in themselves
On the surface, this may come off as self-serving, but through self-investment, a young person is better able to deal with the nuances within life. Further, this early investment within themselves will allow a younger person to be more agile throughout life.
Through their own success, they will also have the ability to self-support themselves, thus not being a burden to the larger society at hand. Though this may appear simple upon first light, it can be hampered by the fact that many younger people do not fully know who they are.
2. A Young Person should try “everything”
When someone is young, their fluid knowledge is at its greatest. Further, their capacity and openness to new things are at their greatest. This is also defined by science in which the plasticity of your brain is best able to adapt. Oftentimes, this can cause much angst in parents who see their children trying new hairstyles and seeming to flit constantly from one personality change to the next.
Further, a young person’s brain continues to grow throughout their 20’s. Young people can be helpful by using this openness to the “new” and plasticity to bring a new perspective. Through trying “everything” and continual experimentation, this will lead to an older individual with greater working knowledge and also an older person who is more open to trying new things.
3. A Young Person should not fear failure but accept it as a learned opportunity
All too often, I see younger people who are not allowed to fail. I believe that part of the issue is that life has become too “safe.” By preventing younger people from failing grit is not learned, and the idea of long term investment in a task is lost. It is long term investment and small failures that lead to the world’s greatest inventions.
Further, in a society where failure may be potentially damaging long term wise with the advent of the importance of the standardized test, it can create robotic younger people who simply only wish to tote the line. In the past Americans have been successful by consistently challenging the status quo. The status quo stifles ingenuity, and its number one foe is a failure. The status quo is created in order to prevent and circumvent failure.
4. A Young Person should invest in opportunities that create “capital”
One of the simplest things a young person can do in order to be helpful would be to invest in capital. By capital, I mean they should spend time investing in areas of leadership that help to build skills not only for their futures but for their abilities and communities. Communities who invest heavily in a young person’s future often will see a higher return on investment.
This capital building not only translates to better individuals but more stable communities that are better able to thrive and grow. Though simple, the return is so high also because this capital creates individuals with more confidence.
5. A Young Person should be engaged in life and not just allow life to happen
A young person should be engaged in life and should not just allow life to happen to them. This is one of the simplest ways a young person can be helpful. A young person who is engaged is able not just to allow life to happen, but able to be a disruptor.
Disruption is the path to change. This disruption leads to new perspectives, new ideas, and ways of thinking that may not have been explored before. By being engaged a person, I able to marry themselves to improving their communities. Nothing is worse than a young person who is indifferent, and it is indifference that is most dangerous to a social democracy like ours.
Simple Things You Can Do To Be Helpful While Young by Andy Noble
Name: Andre Alexander Noble
Institution: Santa Fe College
Graduation Year: 2019
Hobbies: Reading science fiction related to the African Diaspora