Underachieving is still achieving

By Abigail Hasle

I have no problem admitting that I am an academic underachiever. This disposition does not manifest itself in my professional or personal life. My underachievement is only prevalent in school. Procrastination, giving it 90 percent and meeting the minimum requirements are my mode of operation.

As I define it, an underachiever is a person with great ability, but they lack the drive to perform at their fullest potential.

As a true underachiever I do not try to rationalize my actions. I just take responsibility and deal with the consequences. If in my haste to finish an assignment I make a mistake, I own up to it. If a project does not meet the requirements set forth by the teacher, I suck it up and take the grade.

Many underachievers have managed to make it through four years of college without taking a make-up exam, contesting a grade or asking for a teacher to move a test or quiz.

Being the academic underachiever that I am means I have had my share of late nights writing term papers that were not up to par. However, one thing that I have never resorted to is plagiarism.
Plagiarism is the mark of a lazy person, not an underachiever. I feel the need to establish the difference because of recent events.

Last week when a couple of Flagler College students were caught plagiarizing each other’s work, I was utterly amazed at the situations and the justifications of those involved. The responses of the students were indignant, laughable and unflatteringly arrogant.

I have always been under the impression that the students at Flagler College were held to higher standards, underachievers and overachievers alike.

The first paragraph of the Flagler College Mission Statement claims, “The aim of Flagler College is to provide a supportive and challenging environment in which students acquire knowledge, exercise good citizenship, and adhere to high ethical standards.” Because the nature of this statement is so fundamental to the identity of Flagler College I am confident that the administration will appropriately reprimand all of those involved.

But in the mean time, for all of those out there who find themselves in a self-induced difficult situation, here is some advice from an underachiever — things usually work out better in the end if you just suck it up and deal with your mistakes.

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