Don’t play with me…Posted: August 26, 2008
Last night I experienced a phenomena that I thought would not follow me from my undergrad career to my years (?) in graduate school.
As you may or may not know I went to Shepherd University for my undergrad and Shepherd is a very commuter heavy school. With that brings a lot of “non-traditional” (re: older) students and more than a few unusual ones to boot. 99 percent of the time these students brought a lot to the table; their life experience, perspective, and scholarly drive (i.e. they were less likely to be hung over than most of the “traditional” students, myself included) shaped class discussions in interesting ways that would not have been possible in a classroom made up of just people in their late teens and early twenties.
But on occasion one or two of those students could be the most horrid person to have in the classroom. Anyone, in any department, who went to Shepherd knows what I am talking about. The half-crazed student who mumbled, ranted, interrupted the teacher and his/her fellow students, couldn’t stay on topic, shared awkward personal details, sought to dominate the class discussions, and, generally, sucked the intellectual oxygen out of the classroom. Usually the professors were too nice to do anything about it.
Now, I thought such students were just a by-product of Shepherd’s unique demographics. But no it seems that they’re common where ever you go, since I have one in my first graduate class.
Indeed, the more things change the more they stay the same.