I recently discovered that a rather poor journal was still publishing. I took it to class and we looked it over as an example of things not to do. I then suggested that this may be a venue for a first publication which resulted in the following discussion with Ima Ass.
Me: “One of the goals we are working on is getting students ready to publish and that first publication is very difficult”
Ima Ass: “So you want me to waste time on these people?”
Me: “No, I want you to get published. There is no way major journals are going to read your work if you don’t have a track record. Publish in shit journals, get known, and move on to better things.”
Ima Ass: “That is just stupid! Journals will recognize good writing and you are just telling me to waste my time on shitty journals!”
Me: “Last term we had a student not only publish but win an award. It was journal I had never heard of but now the student….”
Ima Ass: “…waste of my time.”
Watching student: “Excuse me, but can I send something I’ve finished now. Is that wrong?”
Me: “Heck no. I’ll look it over if you want.”
Forward to end of class.
Ima Ass: “I’m going to be away for four weeks.”
Me: “That is not acceptable and we have a formal attendance….”
Ima Ass: " …all my other profs are fine with it. And I know the material anyway.”
Me: “You will need to supply me with a formal letter explaining why you will be away so I can place it in my records.”
And I think, gentle reader, you know why I want that letter. After all, I cannot force attendance. Grades, on the other hand……