Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M | TigerDroppings.com

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JOJO Hammer
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Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M



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EASTON, Pa. - An eastern Pennsylvania judge says a graduate student's lawsuit over a C-plus grade she received can move forward.



The (Easton) Express-Times ( http://bit.ly/Ye2Aj1) says Northampton County Judge Emil Giodano ruled Wednesday that there's enough evidence for Megan Thode's lawsuit against Lehigh University to proceed.

The Bethlehem university had argued that the suit was without merit.

Thode maintains that the mediocre grade in one class kept her from getting her desired degree and becoming a licensed therapist - and, as a result, cost her $1.3 million in lost earnings. Her attorney contends that her teacher targeted her because she is an outspoken advocate for gay marriage.

The instructor denies that.

Talk about grade inflation.

Graduate student Megan Thode wasn't happy about the C-plus she received for one class, saying the mediocre grade kept her from getting her desired degree and becoming a licensed therapist - and, as a result, cost her $1.3 million in lost earnings.

Now Thode is suing her professor and Lehigh University in Bethlehem, claiming monetary damages and seeking a grade change.

A judge is hearing testimony in the case this week in Northampton County Court. Lehigh and the professor contend her lawsuit is without merit.

Thode took the class in fall of 2009. Her instructor, Amanda Eckhardt, testified this week that she stood by the grade, saying Thode failed to behave professionally and thus earned zero out of 25 points in class participation, bumping her down a full letter grade.

I ... believed she received the grade she earned," Eckhardt said.

The C-plus prevented Thode, an otherwise A student, from going on to the next class and advancing in her professional therapist studies, according to The Express-Times of Easton. She wound up getting a master's degree in human development instead.

Her attorney, Richard Orloski, argued Eckhardt targeted Thode because she is an outspoken advocate for gay marriage. Eckhardt testified that while she believes marriage is between a man and woman, she would never allow her personal views to influence her treatment of students. She said Thode had outbursts in class, did not participate appropriately, was emotionally unstable and failed to heed a warning letter.

Stephen Thode, the plaintiff's father and a longtime finance professor at Lehigh, testified on his daughter's behalf and said her participation score was highly irregular.

"I have never heard of a case, not just at Lehigh, where a student achieved a zero in class participation where they attended and participated in every class," he said.

Northampton County Judge Emil Giordano is presiding over the nonjury trial and will issue a ruling on Thode's lawsuit after testimony concludes.







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genro
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


If she really was graded unfairly because of her political views, then this lawsuit is perfectly legitimate IMO





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When in Rome
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


Oh snap, at Lehigh to boot


This post was edited on 2/13 at 4:39 pm


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Wooly
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Member since Feb 2012
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


germans brah





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baytiger
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


that and a 0 class participation implies she never actually went to class





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sgallo3
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


quote:

saying Thode failed to behave professionally and thus earned zero out of 25 points in class participation, bumping her down a full letter grade.


hard to believe someone could earn a B in a class without participating at all

lawsuit actually sounds legit






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The Boat
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


Germans.

Houma Today.






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genro
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


However if she hasn't previously brought this issue before the dean and school administrators and petitioned for a grad change, she doesn't have a leg to stand on.





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DOC42
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Louisiana
Member since Nov 2012
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


0 out of 25 for class participation and she went to class. Sounds fishy to me. Seems like a legit case





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TxTiger82
LSU Fan
Madison, WI
Member since Sep 2004
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


Seems like a University matter. A lawsuit? This sets a dangerous precedent. Civil rights seems like a helpful excuse for a lawsuit, more than an actual case.





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Wayne Campbell
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Huntsville, TX
Member since Oct 2011
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


quote:

Seems like a University matter. A lawsuit?


Depends on the circumstances. I think most lawyers would avoid a case where proper procedure hadn't been followed regarding grade appeals. It seems unlikely that she wouldn't have won an appeal without the professor having supporting evidence of her being disruptive. But on the other hand, grade appeals processes aren't usually favorable to the student.






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TheCaterpillar
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


Fair lawsuit. Going to every class and being vocal deserves perfect participation.





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TxTiger82
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Madison, WI
Member since Sep 2004
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


quote:

Depends on the circumstances.


Right. If the case involves a civil rights matter, then yes it is fair game for a lawsuit. If that is shown to not be the case, however, then I really don't see why it has any business in the courts. At that point it all boils down to University policy and the leeway they give professors in making these grade decisions. You can criticize the policy, but you also signed up for it. No case.






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ProjectP2294
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Member since May 2007
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


quote:

Thode had outbursts in class, did not participate appropriately, was emotionally unstable and failed to heed a warning letter.


Surely there is some record of this warning letter.






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TxTiger82
LSU Fan
Madison, WI
Member since Sep 2004
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


quote:

Going to every class and being vocal deserves perfect participation.


I agree but that doesn't make it a "fair" lawsuit, at least as I see it. I could be way off base, I don't know.






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ProjectP2294
Penn Fan
St Louis County
Member since May 2007
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re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


quote:

Going to every class and being vocal deserves perfect participation.

Not if the teacher decides she isn't "participating appropriately".






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TigerMan327
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Monroe
Member since Feb 2011
2837 posts

re: Pa. grad student sues, says C-plus cost her $1.3M


although it is BS if the professor gave her a ZERO for participation just because of her views the fact that she is saying she deserves 1.3 million is ridiculous..

The article states she is a A student meaning a little C+ would not effect her GPA that much at all and would not keep her from getting into any program. I have never heard of a degree were you have to get a B to move to the next course. I have seen were the lowest you can get is a C. and the fact that she continued on a different path because she got a C is fricking dumb. She could have simply retaken the class and got a better grade and moved on with her degree instead of going to court and bitching about the problem for 3 frickING YEARS






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