Friday, July 24, 2009


A couple months ago, I had the privilege of sitting next to KSU's President Emeritus, Betty Siegal at a brunch. Once she found out I was a Kennesaw student, she asked me one of her famous questions: "Who is your favorite professor at KSU?"

When she had been President of the University, she would eat breakfast at the Waffle House near campus. Her table was always open to students coming to talk to her. And her first question was always, "Who is your favorite professor?". She would then write that professor's name down on a Waffle House napkin, and send it to the professor with a note saying that an anonymous student in one of their classes named the professor as their favorite. They could then bring the napkin back to Waffle House to get a free breakfast with the president. But she found that no one ever redeemed the napkin, choosing instead to keep it as a reminder that they had made a difference to one of their students.

Since we were not at Waffle House, Ms. Seigal did not write down my professor's name, nor will that professor ever get a note saying that an anonymous student had named them as their favorite professor. I have often wondered since then, should I tell that professor? To tell the person without the cover of anonimity would look suspiciously like fishing for a grade. Should I just send a note? Should I take Ms. Seigal's example and include a Waffle House napkin? Or should I continue as I have, leaving the professor in blissful ignorance; for once people are aware that they are observed, they act differently. What would you do?

Did you ever recieve a compliment that made it hard for you act the same way around that person again? Maybe they commented on your maturity though to most others you were not. Or lost a friendship over a snide comment not meant for your ears? Are you aware of your audience?

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