Attitudes towards religion and Christianity are changing fast in this country. In 2018 and 2019, 65% of students self-identified as Christian, which is a 12% drop over the decade. While they are still the majority, Christian students can often feel marginalized in certain situations. Being able to be steadfast in their faiths also demands a lot of effort. Let’s take a look at some of the challenges Christian students have to face in secular universities.
Difficulty to Adapt
One of the biggest issues with students transitioning from a religious to a secular school is adapting to an environment that is not centered around their faith. They also can’t expect everyone to share faith and core principles as they do. This could lead to plenty of clashes and difficulties integrating.
This is why parents should consider giving their children a glimpse at a secular education first. Some will prefer their children to attend religious school early while others will prefer to send them just when they’re getting ready to go to college.
The choice of school will also make a difference. You have schools that will have a rigorous college preparatory program that will prepare students to face the social and academic challenges of attending a secular college. If you want an example, you can check out visitation.net. Going to a school like this will at least give them a chance to ease their way in and not experience as much of a clash.
Temptations and Ridicule
One of the biggest challenges of college life, especially campus life, are temptations. Remaining chaste and pious is much easier when everyone else around you are doing the same. But what makes things even tougher is when students are alienated and ridiculed for their faith. If the student was very sheltered before, they might have difficulty dealing with exclusion. This is why they should have a solid support system in place before they start and try to join likeminded groups.
Depending on your denomination, you may have many more obligations. There are denominations where you may have to go to church 2 or 3 times of the week in addition to other church-related activities. And you may not want to have to choose between your religious and school obligations. But, in some cases, you will have to choose one over the other, and many students express guilt when they have to neglect their church duties. They might also feel a sense of disconnection as a result.
Another major challenge of going to a secular college is having to deal with professors who push their own beliefs on the students. Staying in a class with someone you fundamentally disagree with can be difficult. It could also present a moral dilemma when your schoolwork has to conform to their beliefs.
Being a religious student of any kind in a secular university can be a challenge. However, it is not insurmountable as long as you have a solid support system and a clear idea of what to expect.