The Muses of SI
Sarah Mulchand '14
We are SI. Students make up St Ignatius, a 150 year old Jesuit College Preparatory in San Francisco. As SI students, we strive for excellence both inside and outside the classroom. We find our passions and follow them, setting ever higher goals and fighting to meet them. But what is it that inspires and motivates an SI student? Perhaps, like the ancient Greek poets and musicians, we are inspired by muses – known in classical mythology as the personification of literature, science, and the arts. Poets would call upon or channel these goddesses of music, art or poetry to spark and guide their creative work. While our “muses” today may not be gods or goddesses, they continue to influence and inspire us in our daily lives.
The Muse of Tradition
Ignatius Loyola calls us to “give and not to count the cost...to toil and not to seek for rest.” We are presented with a clear goal: to become loving, aware leaders and citizens living “AMDG: For the Greater Glory of God.”
The Muse of Wisdom
Teachers have a considerable influence on each student. Beyond setting the academic bar, they impress us with knowledge and enthusiasm for their respective subjects. They challenge us not just to stress us out, but to stretch our brains and capabilities. Finally, when we hit a bump or a fork in the road, SI teachers’ doors are always open. They offer us words of wisdom to help us pick ourselves up and continue down the right path.
The Muse of Technology
With the recent introduction of SI’s one-to-one iPad program, technology has taken an even more prominent role in student life. Even if the new freedom these iPads provide can sometimes distract us, they are a new medium through which we can imagine, create and connect.
The Muse of Community
During that first Bruce-Mahoney game freshman year, each of us, perhaps for the first time, was drawn into a new community: hundreds of students cheering together, all on the same side. Yet, I believe our SI community runs deeper than just school spirit. Through our four years at SI, we come to know a community of teachers and students who share experiences and care for one another.
The Muse of Friendship
We depend on our friends to laugh, complain or cry with. They help us get through four influential years of high school. More than that, our talented and diverse friends and peers can demonstrate incredible hard work, generosity or leadership, and inspire us to do the same.
The Muse of San Francisco City
SI’s location plays a key role in our culture. We come together to cheer for the Giants and the 49ers, and have access to professional ballet, symphony and theater. San Franciscan ideas like recycling and composting or gay rights. And when we need a break from our day, we can walk out onto the piazza and gaze at a perfect view of the Pacific Ocean.
The Muse of Service
SI pushes us to be “men and women with and for others.” In fact, we are required to complete community service hours in order to graduate. Thank goodness for that requirement, because without it, even one student might miss out on the experience of serving others. Community service checks our perspective, and keeps us grounded. The people we meet can often teach us more than we could ever hope to teach them.
The Muse which Ignites
We channel these muses into our classes and our passions. We learn to push and challenge ourselves today so that, eventually, as St Ignatius once said, we may “go forth and set the world on fire.”
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