Claremont, Calif. — Have you taken charge of your own education? The creative technological genius Buckminster Fuller says: "You must learn to get education by yourself. . . . You learn by yourself."
American President and sometime professor of government Woodrow Wilson declared:
"Command your own development."
old Sawney Webb of Bell Buckle, Tenn., used to give this challenge to his students:
"Go off by yourself and plan your life, taking no one's advice but that inner conscience which dictates to us all if we listen, and tells us right from wrong. . . . I have never seen a boy that I wouldn't absolutely trust if he would go off to himself and ask himself, 'What ought I to do?'"
Martha Graham, the artist of modern dance, insists on this individual meaningfulness:
"There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening which is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost. The world will not have it."
A philosopher from India, Eknath Easwaren, underscores the broad view of human opportunity:
"Whatever our place in life, each of us has a contribution to make that can be made by no one else."
Playwright Arthur Miller -- though speaking like Martha Graham in the context of a particular art -- recently declared on public television:
"It is one man making the difference that can happen. It has happened often. . . ."
The senior vice-president of a can company, Judd H. alexander, put these imperatives and challenges together:
"Students with any academic background are prepared for business when they can educate themselves and continue to grow without their teachers, when they have mastered techniques of scholarship and discipline, and when they are challenged to become all they can be."
Who are these people talking to?
They're calling all learners -- including teachers -- but nobody says it is easy.