Samford University


Samford Stories: Chapter 1

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Professors: more than just teachers

Professor picAlright, I have to sit down and take a couple minutes to talk about my professors. They are the absolute best. I could not possibly ask for better professors than the ones that I've got. So, we're a few weeks into the semester, right? My professors hardly even know my name at this point, much less do they know me well enough to really respect me as an individual and trust me to be completely honest with them, right? Well listen to this story: 

I get a voicemail from my mom, and she's bawling, telling me that my grandmother had just passed away last night. Of course this absolutely breaks my heart, both for losing my grandmother and for how hard my mom is taking it. I'm just in shock for the rest of the day, but I push through my classes, make it back to the dorm, do my work, and just collapse in bed, mind racing at a thousand MPH. Well the next day, I get another call from the folks and they're telling me that the tentative date for the funeral is going to be later that week. I start freaking out, wondering how in the world I'm supposed to make this work. I've got so much work this week already, and now I'm supposed to get home? And what about make-up work? What in the world do I do about that? Again, my mind's racing, but I settle myself down enough to sit down and write my professors an email. I tell them what's going on, what the plans are, and I let them know that I may have to miss class but that I can't tell them when because we don't have a solid plan. And I mean this is kind of a big pain in the butt for them, right? They would normally give me the work that I would miss ahead of time so that I could be caught up, but they can't do that now because I don't even know what days I'm going to miss. So knowing this in the back of my mind, I'm not even expecting a response, and if I do get one, I'm expecting it to be terse, frustrated, and maybe a hint sympathetic.

Boy, did my professors blow my expectations out of the water. First of all, most of them responded. Of the ones that responded, ALL of them said for me not to worry about the school work aspect of things, just to figure things out and keep them posted. On top of that, three of them offered their condolences-sincere condolences-and said they would pray for me. My CP professor even went as far as to write a whole separate paragraph about how he had recently lost a loved one and how he dealt with it. Then, just to top it all off, I went to class the next day and was stopped in the hallway after class by my CA professor who then proceeded to offer me further condolences and to talk to me in person about one of his personal experiences with losing a loved one and dealing with the pain of it all. professor

I think I can say that I knew I was at the right place from the beginning, but if there were any questions left in my mind, they absolutely and completely vanished after this experience. The funeral ended up getting pushed to a weekend did not even affect my classes but to have my professors respond the way they did was still unbelievable. Where else can you get that kind of treatment from your professors? I may be wrong, but honestly, I can't think of any other college in the world that would have professors who respond that way. I'm so thankful for this school and the people who influence me during my time here. I'm SO very blessed.

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