As professors, we like when our students appreciate our teaching and see value in learning. We are not students’ enemies; our effort or desire is to work collaboratively with them to they can be successful, complete their degree program, and have a memorable college experience. Allow me to share with you an email I received from a brilliant student who had a rough time attending class regularly:
“…Now for the more pressing issue. I want to sincerely apologize for how this semester has transpired. I had a fair share of circumstances this semester. I will not bog you down with the specifications, just know that the events were not in my favor.
I appreciate you for allowing me the opportunity to turn in the work I submitted today. Our conversation, though brief, did not allow me to express my gratitude. I do not ask for sympathy. I do not expect you to give me special privilege. I only ask that you judge me based on the quality of my work, and the merit of my desire to make things right. I understand that life goes on amidst tragedy. As such, do what is right. For all parties.
Finally, I want to express my appreciation for each and every lecture I made it to. Even when there was dead silence in the classroom after one of your brilliant interpretations, I could feel the understanding that you and I shared on several occasions. You are a wonderful professor, and an even greater intellectual.
With my deepest respect,
Student X ”