Friday, October 23, 2009

Ancoro Imparo

By Carla Foote
Director of Communications, MOPS International and FullFill™ Advisor
Visit Carla’s Bio

Ancoro Imparo

Michaelango said that at age 87.

If your Latin is a little rusty, this means, “I’m still learning.”

As I dropped my daughter off to college this fall, I was struck by how often I heard the deans, professors and administrators talk about their goal of inspiring lifelong learners. That the classroom “information” aspect of college was not the main emphasis. If the students nurtured a love of learning, a commitment to be engaged in their community and took personal responsibility for growing and developing, then their experience at college would be of value.

They also reminded us all that with the rapid pace of change, many of the issues of our day didn’t even exist when previous generations went off to college. So information becomes quickly outdated, but the ability to learn and grow will serve us throughout our lives.

I was inspired by the academic environment and the exhortation to keep learning. Even though my own college experience is several decades behind me, I considered ways that I could keep fresh and growing at every stage of my life. Here are a couple of ideas that I am trying to implement this year. Perhaps you will think of a few different ones that apply to you, so you can still be a lifelong learner.

Ways to keep learning:

  • Be intentional about reading or listening to viewpoints that I don’t necessarily agree with. While I have a certain economic, political and theological bent, it is good for me to know that other viewpoints exist. I need to keep listening even to those that sound out of tune to me, because otherwise I am in danger of becoming narrow or arrogant in my thinking.

  • Try some new technologies. The generational divide in technology adaptation is pronounced. I don’t want to try new technologies just to appear young or cool (because that would be a failure), but I do want to be able to embrace new technological avenues of communication so I can participate in the conversation.

  • Re-read some classics (or re-watch classic movies). The way I experienced certain influential books or movies in my teens and twenties might be very different from the lens I look through now that I’m fifty. Because I am bringing a different set of life experiences to the content, my whole perspective might be fresh and reveal new insight.

    How are you going to “Ancoro Imparo” – still learn … whether you are 20, 50 or 87?

1 comment:

  1. Carla!
    I love this post. As I watch my children traipse off to school each day this fall, I find myself wondering what it will take to keep them at it for a lifetime. To keep learning and expanding our hearts and minds is one of the greatest gifts from God. Thanks for the insight!