Everything was going along swimmingly (whining about how their job is changing should be expected) until I got to the last two lines in the article.
Oh, you did NOT say that. Less powerful? LESS POWERFUL?? What the $!&$# mindset is that? If you have the same thought please drop her a line at Meg.Worley@pomona.edu. Make sure to point out how powerful you are so that she can decide whether or not she needs to write you back.
Meg Worley, an assistant professor of English at Pomona College in California, said she told students that they must say thank you after receiving a professor's response to an e-mail message.
"One of the rules that I teach my students is, the less powerful person always has to write back," Professor Worley said.
Thomas Jefferson, I would think, is rolling in his grave over such a statement. The man who first pushed for public education to empower the people of America, and had a habit of answering his own door while resident in the White House (yes, the President liked to answer the door and scuff around the White House in his slippers) would be quite put out. In case you've never been to Charlottesville, we should all have WWTJD? bumper stickers. But especially when it comes to education I really do ask myself, what would TJ do?
In our own lives my husband and I have been alternately bemused and insulted by the amazing egos of professors. We are perhaps a bit too egalitarian to be brushing elbow patches with the academic elite in our midst. As I read the above article to my husband and expressed my irritation over Dr. Worley's attitude he recounted his own experience comparing education and competence, and how he assigns respect to each. He spent four years studying fish populations on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. He knew that some of his professors had spent years on their subjects, including hours upon hours of field research, literature research, and the analysis and publication of findings. They were, however, abysmal at predicting where a particular fish population might be. My husband, ever a practical man, searched for people who could better guide him on finding what he needed. He talked to the fishermen. They shared their knowledge, told him what he needed to know and shared some additional insights that he hadn't considered. And they never once insisted that he call them "sir."