Kayra MerrillsComment

Lesson #4: Don't Cheat

Kayra MerrillsComment
Lesson #4: Don't Cheat
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When I went to college, I experienced a huge shift in freedom.  Most college students feel the shift of independence, but while they were in high school they had a certain level of freedom like: driving a car, having a job, and keeping up with a relationship. Although, I was involved in student government, cheerleading, and had numerous friends, when school ended I was expected to go home and stay home.  My life outside of school was very controlled and I think I was sheltered for the most part.  

When I went to college I took advantage of the liberty and my freshman year I struggled to keep up with my academic work and saying no to hanging out with friends. Everything was so new to me and for the first time I didn't have to ask anyone for permission to do something or to go out --- I was in heaven.  

But the lack of discipline and procrastination almost got me kicked out of school.  It was the end of my freshman year and I had a big paper due at the end of the semester.  After looking at my syllabus I realized that this paper was due the following day, and I had not put any mental effort in writing this paper.  My roommate who was also my friend took the same course during the previous semester and I asked her if she could let me see her paper, and between me and her she knew what that meant.  Well, I rearranged some things and decided to turn her paper as my own.  It was awful, but my thinking was, "I'll only do this once.  I don't want to fail this course and I'll never do this again."  

After turning this paper in, a few days passed, and I received an email from this professor asking to see me.  My stomach sank and I literally felt like throwing up.  I started to think of all types of excuses before this meeting, but I had the intuition that I was caught, and that I was about to face the worst news.  

I walked into her office, and she asked me to sit down.  She pulled out the paper, and asked me, "Is this your paper?"  I stared at her and nodded yes.  Then she responded, "No it's not.  In the works cited page there is an interview that you apparently completed last semester.  How is that possible if you are taking this course now?"  She continued, " I am giving this to the academic integrity office and you may be kicked out school."  I walked out of her office crying wanting to sink into the ground.  I had no idea what I was going to do.  I called my sister and shared what I had done, and told her I felt miserable.  She told me to relax and that all I could do is pray and hope that the university would have mercy over me.  

I was asked to complete an academic integrity course, and they conducted a trial on my case to determine if I should be expelled.  At the end of this painful experience, I was not kicked out of school, but I did fail the course.   This is one of the most embarrasing experiences I have had to deal with in my life.  And to be honest many people don't know this about me.  But I believe that we are all human and we all have things we wish never happened, but when we embrace these experiences and have gratitude for the lesson they brought to our life, we can love ourselves that much more.  No one is perfect and I am no exception.

This experience completely changed me, and it made me reflect on how I had to make better decisions to support my success at school.   College is fun and you should have some of the best years of your life, but in my case, I had forgotten why I was there and my priorities were not in order.

  I learned to take pride in my own work, and to fully understand that there's no value in taking short cuts.   Be a genuine person and come to your life situations with honesty.  Carrying around lies is toxic and you don't need that in your life.

Lesson #4: Don’t Cheat

 

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Outfit time:  It's holiday season and the ugly holiday sweater is still a trend.  There are now competitions and parties dedicated to this style!  I paired my holiday sweater with a velvet red skirt and black pumps.  I kept it simple and somewhat chic.  I hope you have fun this season and wear a beautiful ugly sweater that shows your holiday spirit. 

Below are the links for the same skirt and shoes.  I purchased this sweater last year and it's no longer available on Amazon, but I linked another comparable sweater. Happy Tuesday!