Reason #20293 Why Graduate School is Not Worth It
Because for all your blood, sweat, and tears, this is your reward.
Teaching at some 94th tier for-profit hell’s waiting room ‘school’ which, for greedymoneyreasons only, has been accredited by Lord Chancellor Jesus or Magic Mike or whoever is making decisions these days.
Allow this humble theater troupe to perform several brief vignettes for your viewing pleasure.
Vignette 1: “A Curious Inquiry”
scene: cramped office. nothing visible but filing cabinets and dog eared instructor copies of textbooks nobody ever ordered. a distinguished looking man with a beard, phd, and brain that would make harold bloom weep converses with a student who has been caught plagiarizing on a number of occasions.
Student: (earnestly) So let me ask you, Dr.——— (very Jane Austen, amirite?), what does it feel like when you’re teaching, to know that nobody in class is paying attention?
Dr. ———: ……………………..
Student: But we all seem to be doing pretty good on the tests, so you must be doing something right!
Dr.———-: (manical laughter) Yeah I guess.
Me: (hides behind computer monitor, turns an attractive shade of purple from the effort of holding back rage/laughter)
I guess SupaPlagiarist wasn’t taking into account how easy those tests must have been for people who don’t pay attention to pass.
Here’s another harrowing tale…. and I’ve had enough of theater for one day so I’ll just tell you how it played out.
My students were given a very brief reading assignment. Of course, not one person did it. I asked them point blank and they were honest. So I told the fuckers that when they show up completely unprepared to work, there was no point in being there since I couldn’t do my lesson plan, and told em they were all going to be marked absent and they should go home.
At this point one particular gem of a human being started shouting that I had no right to do that, they pay a lot of money to be there, and if they want to sit there and do nothing, that’s their right.
Now this person is completely right in that education costs a metric fuckton of money. And I certainly don’t think that’s right. But you’d think this would make someone more motivated to do actual work, when instead it leads many of them to believe that they are buying a degree, not earning one.
But you know what?
The next class, I’d say 70% of em had done the reading.
Instead of feeling victorious though, I almost feel more defeated. I don’t want to be Michelle fucking Pfeiffer in ‘Dangerous Minds.’ Or Hillary Swank in “freedom writing diaries.” or Ryan Gosling in that movie where he sells crack to his students parents.
This will not end. And come next semester, I’ll have to wage war with a fresh set of faces, with my goal being to force at least half of em to do the reading?
This is the fate for MOST doing a phd with the goal of being a “professor.”
I used to get chills when they called me that.
Now I want to bang my head against the wall because it’s a fucking meaningless word. Whatever prestige or’ Goodbye Mr. Chips feelings’ I had associated with it is certainly not the reality. It’s an empty title, just like phd is going to be when/if I finally ever finish.
It’s just another way for your advisers to con you into thinking all this shit is worth it.