Friday, December 10, 2010

Dream the Impossible Dream

The ad hoc Grade Appeal Committee rendered their decision and issued their report today. For several reasons, some I had not even mentioned directly in my appeal, the committee unanimously voted to change my grade for the course to the "B" I felt I deserved all along. They agreed the APA grading policy was punitive and even pointed out that the course syllabus itself had quite a few errors and pondered if those would also be considered "significant" and worth deducting if situations had been reversed. If not, they indicated there is some level of hypocrisy with that system of accountability. That's pretty much my favorite paragraph of the two page written opinion (other than the last sentence in the first paragraph that reinstates my original course grade before the final paper was taken into account).
Okay, enough celebrating...well, mostly. :)
It is too late to apply for admission to take spring courses, but rest assured I will be on track for the February 1st deadline so I can officially begin my master's degree next summer. YAY! I was nervous about the appeal and what my colleagues would think if I pursued each stage of the process, but they have been nothing but supportive. Furthermore, this decision was made with a blind situation wherein my name was withheld and I had not discussed my situation except with a few select friends among my colleagues, so they were really able to look at the paper and course grading situation very objectively. I do worry if there will be any challenges in the admissions process itself where Professor X is one of the two-member admissions committee or if future courses with him will be tainted by this experience. (Keep in mind I did really well in the other course with Professor X--an "A" and really did have a "B" in this course before the final proposal got such a low score for APA citations--only 10 points were deducted for the other issues.)
Yes, I'm a worrier. Why worry about tomorrow when today has enough troubles of its own, right?!? In fact, when the department chair brought me the envelope with the decision, I was in the middle of processing my student teachers for check-out after they had completed licensure paperwork. As I was putting it in my pocket, I said, "I'll wait to read this later since you know how badly I want to pursue my own higher education and create additional career opportunities which tends to make me overly emotional." She said, "Oh, I think you'll want to read this then" and had a large smile on her face. I definitely did my little "happy dance" at the table in the hallway and thanked her for her support through the appeals process.
For now, I embrace the impossible dream that has been proven possible with persistence, the power of positive friends/family encouraging me to explore and exhaust all options, and can't wait for the next steps. I've also been without sodas for so long now and still not had a migraine (shocking...even with the sodas, I still average 2-3 a month) that I am also greatly encouraged to dream that impossible dream too---kicking another addiction and furthering my quest for personal freedom in health, fitness, and life.
If I were still drinking, I'd drink a toast to me tonight - and one for my biggest fans too!

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