Doesn’t Get With The Program(ming)

| Learning | May 30, 2014

(It is 1989 and my major in college requires me to take a course in COBOL, a computer language that is seen as a dinosaur in the industry compared to the new things that were coming out at the time. I have a natural affinity for programming and I’m making an easy ‘A’ in the class. I’ve also gotten a bit lazy and haven’t gone to class for the last week and a half. I’ve a history of skipping class. I’ve run into the professor in the hallways.)

Professor: “Where have you been? I’ haven’t seen you in class recently.”

Me: *lying* “Oh, I missed class last week because I was ill and this week because I was catching up on a research paper.”

Professor: “Skipping class to catch up on other school work is not very beneficial. An hour of your time isn’t going to complete your research paper sooner in a significant way.”

Me: *lying* “Oh, you know, I didn’t think about it that way. Sorry.”

Professor: “Are you aware that you missed the first of the final three exams today?”

Me: “I thought they were scheduled for next Tuesday!”

Professor: “That’s the original schedule; however, last week we changed the schedule.”

Me: “Oh, no! Is there a way I can make that up? Is there another class I can sit in today to take that test?”

Professor: “No other classes, but I can give you two additional program assignments in lieu of that one exam.”

Me: “Thank you. I really appreciate it. I’m sorry that I messed up this way.”

Professor: “What exactly are you looking to get out of this class?”

Me: “Oh, a passing grade.”

Professor: “Okay, then.”

( I aced the final two exams with perfect scores, and completed the two programming assignments by the next class. I know that my scores all mounted up to me having an ‘A’ for the class, but when I received my grades after the semester, I had a ‘C.’ Exactly what I said I was looking for out of the class. Thank you, professor, for giving me one of the biggest lessons in my life.)

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