Submitted by Ray Egan.
In the late seventies and early eighties – back when it was still known as Fort Steilacoom Community College – for some reason the college became a mecca for Middle Eastern students. Some claimed to be princes, or at least lived like one; e.g. one student bought a home in Madrona Park, complete with a swimming pool. Unleashed in a welcoming Pierce County from their cultural restrictions, it should be no surprise that their testosterone was unleashed as well.
With the college’s open door policy, these princely fellows didn’t have to have their parents buy admission for them, or cheat their way in, they just had to pay out-of-state tuition. Which they did happily, ’cause they had money, lots and lots of money.
As one can imagine, writing assignments were not to be allowed to get in the way of spending money, driving fancy cars, dressing in the latest fashions and pursuing feminine company. Herein lies our local scandal.
In my Introduction To Business class, Business 101, as a requirement for a passing grade, a term paper was required which involved recommending solutions to a series of problems at a fictional manufacturing company. Each term I made up a different problem with a different company. The students’ names were to be written on the back of the last page so I wouldn’t know whose paper I was grading until after I’d assigned it a grade.
One of the more interesting papers I received began with a suggestion that morale at the company could be raised by opening a cafeteria which employed the food service staff from a local middle school. At the bottom of the first page was a recommendation that the company hire consultants from the Sam Houston Institute of Technology!
The paper was a delightfully interesting, well written, spoof written by what I’d guess was a junior or senior in marketing at one of our local universities. When I was finished reading it, I turned it over and wrote a note to the purported author: “If you can prove that you wrote this paper, I’ll give you a grade.” After he collected his paper, I never saw him again. To this day, I wonder how much he paid for it.