Empathy Intervention – Jake Criscione

Coming to Cal Poly as a freshman, I expected and experienced a lot of change in everyday life. Certain things like class difficulty, food options, and even the weather are all things that have been new to me as well as others. For this intervention, I wanted to share the experiences I’ve had with friends on campus who have had conflicting opinions and backgrounds. For example, I have talked with numerous students who find themselves struggling with the workload of college as well as many students who find it easy. For me, ostracizing these people for their extreme and, in some cases, cocky opinions would be natural; however, I know there are reasons behind their thoughts, so I considered what their high school was like. Some high schools may be more successful in preparing their students for college adversity, while others may not. After discussing high school environments with most of these people, it made sense to me why they were either thriving or having a hard time adjusting. The same goes for the on-campus food. Some students I have met enjoy the food because of its variety and quality while others cannot stand it. For those who openly despise the dining and complain often, I consider what they must be used to. Back at home, they may have been blessed with the opportunity to eat higher quality meals. By considering a friend’s background and asking about it, I have found that it is much easier to understand people’s opinions.

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