Let’s be real: College sucks for a lot of reasons. The “Freshman Fifteen,” midterms and finals, essays that take you a million years to write and rewrite, only to rewrite again. I hated it all. But dealing with haughty, self-important professors may have been the absolute worst. I remember at University of Toronto, I had a professor who only assigned books he had written. This is a sure sign of a narcissist and someone who cares far more about their reputation and book sales than they do about education.
Rather than assign their 1200+ students books they had written, some professors exert their control in other ways – by being complete and total hardasses. I thought the professor who simply wouldn’t accept late papers was bad, but this week I was introduced to someone worse: a professor who deducted points from a paper that was submitted fifteen minutes before the deadline.
This particular professor came to my attention via a post in the r/mildlyinfuriating subreddit. It definitely belongs in a subreddit called r/incrediblyinfuriating. In the post, OP shares an exchange between them and the professor. Their email reads as follows:
“Hello Professor How are you? I am writing to you because there was a grading mistake from the assignment that was due on February 1st. It shows that you marked off 10 points as a late penalty however as you can see on Canvas, I properly submitted the document in a timely manner before the due date at 11:46 PM on 01/31/2023. Please let me know whenever you fix the grade. Thank you.”
Perfectly reasonable email. This student clearly deserves to have their grade amended. Unfortunately, the professor didn’t seem to agree. Here’s their reply:
“I have just now checked and see that the assignment was submitted 13 minutes before the posted due date however you must understand that it was handed in on a last-minute basis which is the reason why you received a late penalty. As a result, I will not be removing the late penalty deduction and would advise you to submit your work no less than an hour before the due date moving forward. “
That’s… uhh… not how late penalties work. Needless to say, Redditors were quick to jump to OP’s defense, but the real gold came from Twitter, where the post ended up going viral. People love to marvel at the utter shittiness of some people, and boy, did they eat this situation up. I’ve put together the best responses – and funniest tweets – regarding the matter, but I’m praying for an update from this poor soul. I hope they get the grade they deserve, and that the professor faces some sort of consequence. This kind of behavior is unacceptable from a professional.