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completely OT....... what would YOU do?

Sia's picture

I'm in school FT. last quarter, I caught a fellow classmate cheating on a test. The university has a strict zero tolerance policy, and I knew if I told that she would be removed. I struggled with it for a few hours and finally decided to tell my professor. I had to make a formal statement, and speak to the medical director and speak in front of a governing board as to what I witnessed. The girl was a friend, or I thought she was, so it was hard for me.

Anyway, they assured me that she would not know who I was and that she would be removed from the school, or at the very least, the program.

I was in class this morning and guess who walked in. Yep.... cheater. This is a techniqe class and we are expected to be each others "dummies". During our break between classes, I spoke with the professor who took me to the medical director straight away. The medical director was a complete bitch. She basically told me I had to "just get over it". WHAT????? I told her to kiss my ass and that would be the last time I reported anyone for cheating. PERIOD. and I walked out. I went to my class and finished my day.
DH encouraged me to call the dean, which I did. I had to leave a msg b/c she was unavailable. That was several hours ago. How long should I wait before I call back?


stepoff's picture

Sia, honey, I don't think I would do that. JMO, of course, but if they decided to allow her to stay, there could be other circumstances or issues that you're not aware of. I would just let it go.

Sia's picture

I forgot to metion that she knows it was me...someone told her. I didn't tell anyone, except people I DONT go to school with....

Sia's picture

I didn't look at it as being a tattletale. I'm paying a TON of money to attend this school and worked my arse off to get in. I'll be damned if someone is gonna come along and cheat to get ahead. That's just wrong. I don't understnad the mentality that you are a "snitch" or "tattletale" when you speak up for what's right.

We are going into the medical field, working on patients. Would YOU want someone who cheated working on YOU? It's about integrity......

Sia's picture

her grades are only good b/c she cheated. Well, when I did tell, they said how great it was that I told, etc blah blah blah.....
They told me that I would not ever have to have classes with her again, that's why I went to the professor. I don't care if they kick her out, I just want out of this class. Unfortunately I cannot drop this class until a dean gives me permission b/c it's required to continue moving forward.

Sia's picture

it is extremely competitive and you need to be highly skilled, not just "cheated" your way there.

Sia's picture

dropped was probably the wrong term....maybe just switched to another class....less drama

Sia's picture

No, she knows...they had to tell her. Plus, there was some FB drama b/c she WAS my friend.....I'd just rather not be in the same class...

Sia's picture

Crayon, I think it's ridiculous that it's accepted. This girl is fairly young and has no qualms about cheating to get ahead. Speaks volumes to me about how people think so little about integrity and honesty these days.

Tells me she didn't learn a lot from her parents. Or maybe the schools she attended didn't teach her about that? I work pretty damn hard to teach my kids that honesty and integrity should be above reproach.

I guess that's why all these school shootings happen? No one teaches the "do the right thing" moto anymore, they teach the "no tatteltaling" one instead. I dont get that.

I mean, I'm going into some pretty hard aspect of the medical field. If she were to "cheat" her way through these classes and then get put out on the job, someone's life could be at risk. But, then these people who don't teach honesty would be the ones screaming the loudest when a medical mishap happens. They'd be the 1st ones on the court house steps ready to sue b/c of it.

stepkate's picture

I would probably let it go.

The university I graduated from had a big cheating scandal my last year. A former student went through a bunch of doctoral theses written by previous students as a requirement to obtain their PhD. He found several cases of plagiarism, and kept looking, only to find more. This not only implicated students who had graduated as long as 20 or 30 years ago an had been working in their chosen field for as long, but their advisors and professors, some of whom still worked with the university, because they should have caught the discrepancies. All theses are kept in the university library where any member of the public has access to them. The plagiarism ranged from a couple of copied sentences to huge 'chapters' copied near verbatim (estimated 60% of some theses).

At the former student's insistence every step of the way, degrees were revoked, sanctions were leveled against university employees, and it was quite the embarrassing predicament for the university. The former student, as it turned out, never graduated from the university because after reviewing his application, his request for his degree was denied. Right or wrong, cheating or not, the general consensus among current students was that he was just taking out his frustrations on 'innocent people' because he was being whiny, jealous, etc. Though we all knew that the cheaters were in the wrong, I think he came out of the situation with as much a scarred reputation as anyone else. He certainly didn't make any friends in his chosen field, either.

stepkate's picture

I'm saying that I would let it go, but at the same time i would know that I was not doing the morally right thing (assuming I'm not just turning someone in for the wrong reasons, of course)

I would weigh the possible good with the possible bad consequences, and I don't think that I would be able to stand up to all the negatives.

winehead's picture

Sia, I completely agree with you and I would have told too. It's standing up for yourself. A cheater devalues everyone's degree. I know it can be damn hard on whistleblowers but you're taking the high road. By NOT saying anything you inherently accept the situation and allow it to continue. There must be faculty who will be on your side and help take this on with you.

I would definitely talk with the Dean. I don't know your particular school but some deans are so deep into budget cuts and other hassles that they are ultra stressed and hard to reach. But remember, providing education is their top priority. I'd give it at least 24 hours.

I've worked in universities my whole grownup life. PM me if you want to strategize.

Old Timer's picture

Ouch. I got in big trouble by being a whistleblower years ago. I am also familiar with the politics of schools. Just try to concentrate on studies. I would not contact them again. In my own experience, and Crayons and other people's it can and will bounce back on you.

It's an unfair world and it's really maddening when you do the right thing and but wind up taking the blow back for it. I feel for you. I've been there.

Rags's picture

If the class has a grading scale that determines distribution of letter grade by the highest and lowest performers then you could insist on getting an A in the class or you will go to the press.

However, You have done the right thing ...... now I would let it go. Too much bashing on the administration will likely just cause you grief.

Once you have your degree you will have no more use for the school so get what you need out of them, graduate and go. When they call you for a charitable donation tell them why you will not be contributing.

If it is a prestige school then the benefit you gain from the name of the school will only really impact the first 5yrs of your career. After that you work performance and experience will be the primary contributors to you career success.

And .... go to Grad school somewhere else.

Best regards.

Sia's picture

i dont know who you are...but everytime someone posts something negative you jump on about you stay off my blogs if you dont have something CONSTRUCTIVE to add...

now4teens's picture

You know that this subject is near and dear to my heart since I went back to school FT as well in January after 23 years.

And I gotta tell you, sweetie, I think you went as far as you could go. You reported it. You did what you had to, and that was hard enough, given the fact it was a friend. What the University does after this point is their call. Frankly, I'd be a little disappointed in the administration and THEIR ethics, given the fact they seem to tout a "zero tolerance" cheating policy in writing only.

I encountered the same thing this semester with an classmate in one of my classes (not a friend). She sat next to me, and we became cordial throughout the semester. I thought she was a "serious" student like myself. Much to my surprise, right before one of our exams, I noticed she had "crib notes" written all over her hands and up both her wrists! I was absolutely blown away and extremely disappointed in her actions. Because our seats were pretty much set for the semester, I couldn't change, but I surely did not talk to her the rest of the semester.

I did not, however, "turn her in." I figured, if she was so desperate to cheat, then it would catch up with her eventually. But as for me on a personal note, I would not have anything to do with a CHEAT!

sm27's picture


I totally understand where you are coming from. I am in the nursing program in my school, and it is very competitive. They have a zero tolerance policy on cheating, but I still see students cheat all the time. I think if we were going for anything else, it wouldn't bother me as much, but the fact is, they teach us all this stuff about "veracity", "integrity", and "accountability", so to see a student cheat their way through exams makes me sick. Not so much for their sake, but more for the big picture, which is, what's going to happen when we are out in the real world and you don't know what the hell you're doing, or what critical lab values are, or about confidentiality, etc, etc, because you cheated?

Most Evil's picture

I am glad you reported this Sia. I hope she doesn't ever work on me either, if she doesn't know that material? I too am shocked that all of these adults believe it is ok to ignore this and let it go?.

But I would wait quite a while to see what happens, as you don't want something drummed up against you, that could get you kicked out, if this is the kind of mafia-style schooling there.

Can you possibly change schools? I would resent paying my money to an unethical school, but maybe you are close to finishing. I will tell you, no school I ever attended allowed cheating, in the slightest - its called ETHICAL STANDARDS!! folks!

As far as retaliation from this CHEATER, I would not worry about it. If she threatens you, touches you or harasses you, call the cops. Refuse to be her partner though. HUGS

I am confused's picture

If the class isn't graded on a curve, fuck it. Just don't hang out with her. If it is, and by cheating she's lowering your grade, torch her.

Sia's picture

ok, so the dean DID call me and told me that it was a blazing mistake she was in MY class and she is being removed. The gist of it is that she threatened a lawsuit and since "I" didn't have actual proof, just my word, they decided just to make it extremely difficult for her to proceed. She now has to take all exams in the deans office. Good! I'm glad that they are at least doing something instead of nothing.

For the record, all those that responded that you would just keep your mouth shut.... it speaks volumes about your character. I dont really mean to be so harsh sounding, BUT I think that morally you SHOULD speak up for things in this world that are wrong. What she did was just plain wrong and I feel I did the right thing. All of you who chose to use this blog as your personal "get even with me blog", your comments have been deleted. This is why. It wasn't on topic and some of them were just rude. I will not go away, no matter what you do. I love this site and I love admin and Dawn and will continue to support them. I suggest you grow up.

I am confused's picture

I forgot to tell you, I let a kid cheat off me on a midterm during my sophomore year at UT, and I hated myself for it. I still regret that. I feel like a screwed everyone else in the class. I had done that once before but it was a smoking hot woman and ... well... you know...

I am confused's picture

I'm running late. I never turned either of them in. Yeah I cheated too... that's probably why I didn't tell on either of them Wink I dn't know if the girl learned a lesson or cared at all. The guy I think felt bad too... I still know the guy. He's a lawyer in Houston and doing well. Never saw the girl again, as in ever, after that class.

Sia's picture

not sure who this is directed to? If me, then no, I have never cheated on a test, nor would I. If I can't make it on my own w/out cheating, then I don't deserve it.

For the record, if you read back through the comments, I didn't delete any opposing views, as I welcome them. What I don't welcome is people who have nothing more than snide comments to, I did delete the snide comments, not opposing views.