Sunday, April 21, 2013

Spreading a Little Goodwill

Does anyone
see me out here?
Today after church we had the chance to write notes to go in the care packages our congregation's high school students will be assembling tonight to send to our college students.  My notes, like those written by others, wished the recipients well with the last few weeks of school. But to each of the notes that wasn't going to a professor's or teacher's kid (they don't need to be told), I added something that I'm pretty sure was unique to my missives: "be nice to your professors; they're stressed out, too."

That earned me an odd look and a comment about the professors being nice to the students from one parent from whom I've seen signs of helicopterish tendencies; another who had had her own difficulties with her college-age son (now 3 years into a 2-year AA degree, and looking like he will actually graduate, to the great relief of all concerned, including, I'm sure, the student himself) seemed to think it was a perfectly fine sentiment.

In any case, a half-dozen or so students in at least 2 states will be reminded, sometime in the next 10 days or so, that their proffies are human, too (in Biblical terms, though I didn't make the argument explicitly, their neighbors).  I don't know whether it will make anyone's end of semester any better, but I figured it couldn't hurt to try (and I did point out to the helicopterish parent that this attitude would ultimately be to the student's as well as the professor's benefit).


  1. What a thoughtful gesture (to send care packages) and to remind students that proffies are human, too. Maybe we need pins that indicate so: "I'm human, too!"

  2. I'd actually prefer it if they think of me as a robot: a robot that will fail them if they don't do the work. I cannot compute your excuses, human.

  3. Goodwill is good, so to speak. Bless you for making the effort.

  4. This was a great idea, Cassandra! I hope it will make them think. The helicopter parent reminds me of a relative who had a lot of trouble in school. She once got very upset when she heard me make a comment that could be interpreted that some people simply are not ready/able for college level work. The right teacher, she said, a person who KNOWS how to teach, can make ANY person ready and able for college level work. The problem is, to get all the BAD teachers out and get GOOD teachers, who can do this, in. She was a huge W fan and at that time there was a lot of talk about all the bad teachers.

    I never talk about work at all in front of her. I find it is best not to talk about it in front of any family.

  5. Good on you, Cassandra. A helpful reminder given a very appropriate context.