I was an engineer, then I was a musician. But was I really ever an engineer?

I thought I hated CMU (my alma matter) when I went there. 

I thought that the STEM students were more robotic than the robots they’d build. I resented this. 

I thought the programs within the institution were part of an assembly line to mass produce [high quality] people who’d end up paid super well working as a cog in a bigger machine. I resented this. 

I thought that all of the students were so dead set on having the right answers that they never thought about what it meant to take the test in the first place. They’d work to get high scores on exams and move on to complaining more about the upcoming exam. There was no perspective on the greater picture. I resented this. 

Those who I’d cling to (and consider friends) were often on the fringes of the school, somehow disenfranchised and gawking at the world-class education they were privileged to receive in a safe environment. They were better than robots, and I didn’t resent them so much as I resented the mentalities they chose to exhibit. 

I realize now, after years of learning about myself, that I just didn’t know better. The existing social/power structure of the school likely didn’t help the situation, but I had so much hurt that I attributed to factors that were out of my control. I didn’t know that my self worth wasn’t dictated by the amount of money I made after school was done. I certainly didn’t know to look inward for my happiness.  

I didn’t know myself and I blamed it on CMU.