Nerds: Open for Self-Interpretation

Leanne Haas, Staff Writer



7:30. Eat breakfast. Finish geometry project early. Work on homework due Monday. Spend the rest of the day with friends. This is the schedule of most academically inclined students with a social life and yes, it is achievable.


Most teens of this generation find it hard to have the best of both worlds, and think they must only choose one, therefore grouping those with excellent grades as having no social lives. Having a social life as well as good grades can be done with a little time management. Still, students are blinded by the degrading stereotype that is “The Nerd”.


A nerd, according to, is a dull and unattractive person devoted to a nonsocial pursuit. Though considered slang, the stereotype of a “nerd” is widely used out of context by most.


It is apparent that many students these days find people that are careless about their actions appealing, unknowingly supporting what could be the downfall of high intelligence levels in high schools. Society needs to know the difference between being smart and being socially awkward. Intelligence is often grouped in a category alongside socially and fashionably awkward teenagers by high school students and sometimes even adults.


Many teens of this generation associate people who are intelligent with being a nerd, lowering intelligence standards for young people in fear of being labeled. According to Maxim Dalton, who is has ranked number 3 of the senior class, said “You don’t want to be an outcast, you don’t want to be the person that is studying all the time, staying away from social opportunities.”


This misinterpretation of the stereotype harshly affects the way the general populace sees intelligent people. It is considered a shame to be a nerd, a label nobody would want to be called, thus affecting the views of being smart as well. While in other parts of the world, the brilliant-minded are held above most in society, to be honored and respected.


Instead, smart teens are bullied for working hard. They are called names, made fun of, and are most of the time hurt by words people often are unaware of the effects. Some may even lie about how hard they studied to fit in with others.


“Kids will say ‘yeah I studied about 5-10 minutes for that test and I’ll say ‘me too…’” admitted Maxim. “Perhaps the ability to do things without having to study is a little bit impressive” Some may even go to extremes to prove they are not “nerdy” by bragging about not studying for their test or declaring their low grades as if they deserve a badge of honor for not caring about their future.


All the while students in China study vigorously to attain perfect marks, and children in developing countries could only dream of having a free education. “Unfortunately, people (students) seem to value relationships much more than what school was actually established for” said Maxim.


By the time this generation of underachievers reaches the real world, it may be too late for many students, and the same people who once laughed at the intelligent “nerd” could very possibly one day be begging them for a raise.