What a silly thing love is!' said the student as he walked away. 'It is not half as useful as logic, for it does not prove anything, and it is always telling one of things that are not going to happen, and making one believe things that are not true. In fact, it is quite unpractical, and, as in this age to be practical is everything, I shall go back to philosophy and study metaphysics.' So he returned to his room and pulled out a great dusty book, and began to read.
Should I have a doughnut or my disgusting cardboard? asked Gwynn, as she drew up languidly before me at a study table in a bookstore on State Street, raising a puffed rice cake in the air. My eyes narrowed attentively at her face, but as I hesitated, she announced eagerly, Disgusting cardboard it is!
...your zeal to face life's rough and tumble, your ardor to accept the responsibilities of adulthood is hardly congruent with the aspirations of most graduate students...' He shook his head of disagreeable hair. 'I need not tell you,' he deplored, sinking to paralipsis, 'that there resides in almost every one of 'em the unconscious desire not to grow up. For once the academic goal is attained and the doctorate irradicably abbreviated after the name, the problem of facing the world is confronted. The subtlest, most unremitting drive of the student is his unconscious proclivity to postpone the acceptance of responsibility as long as possible.
Teachers can be a living example to their students. Not that teachers should look for students to idealize them. One who is worth idealizing does not care whether others idealize them or not. Everyone needs to see that you not only teach human values but you live them. It is unavoidable sometimes you will be idealized -- it is better for children to have a role model, or goal, because then the worshipful quality in them can dawn.
But if you tell folks you're a college student, folks are so impressed. You can be a student in anything and not have to know anything. Just say toxicology or marine biokinesis, and the person you're talking to will change the subject to himself. If this doesn't work, mention the neural synapses of embryonic pigeons.