October 29, 2009

The Craw of the Matter

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:15 am by profart

In case you haven’t noticed, students who can’t take responsibility for themselves and their own education really get on my nerves.

You see, most of the my kids are at a community college. Our demographics have drastically changed since I started there. When I started, the majority of our students, something like 65%, were non-traditional-age, working adults. Now, we’ve switched to something like 35%. However, many of our traditional-age students are also trying to work, support families, care for children, take a full course load to get through the degree as quickly as possible, etc. So though our demographic of age had flip-flopped, I would say the general life angle of the students have not.

In other words, most of my students are working their butts off.

Hence, I get annoyed and offended at students who want to shirk their work and complain about their lives getting in the way. Maybe you should take some time to put your house in order, so you can concentrate on your studies better. I get annoyed at students who shirk their work because they don’t care, or because Mom and Dad are footing the bill. You are wasting a precious opportunity, one that most of your classmates are working their butts off to maximize (or get at all). I get annoyed at students who fail to show up to class, then whine about their grades. You aren’t paying for grades. You are paying me to help you in your intellectual development. I know most of these people are not going to be art historians, but there are still skills of critical thinking, reading comprehension, and communication they need- skills that I consider critical life skills.

I get annoyed, because students who whine, complain, and shirk through their educational experience are an offensive affront to all those students who are working three jobs while raising their kids and taking care of their sick mother (all of whom have the flu this time of year) and taking a full load of classes yet manage to come to class, do their work, turn it in, all ON TIME.

And we’re not talking about the students who come to me with issues and need one or two days wiggle room. They may be irksome when I’m grumpy, but being flexible so that folks can manage their time with all that juggling is just part of being in a community college. After all, Janie does sometimes get sick and have to stay home from school, or you might be in a fender-bender or have the starter die, even on exam day. There is a big difference between the occasional and rare emergency and a Slacker.

Slackers suck. Slackers are the rotten apples that ruin semesters, and they manage to disrupt everyone else while ruining it.

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