WESTWOOD—For the past three years, students have been walking out of a classroom in Bunche Hall in stunned silence, feeling degraded, vulnerable, and humiliated. The class is not difficult in terms of concepts or workload, but devastating in the way it forces students to take a good, hard look at their ugly souls.
That class is Humility 1A.
“The class doesn’t really have a syllabus. I say ‘I’m going to pass out the syllabus now’ but I really just hand them back their Stanford rejection letters,” said Professor Robert Henderson. “I like people, I really do, but I think we all just need to be taken down a notch as a society.”
Outside of written assignments, the tests and midterms are said to be emotionally brutal.
“We read Anne Frank for the first four weeks, but the only question on the midterm was ‘What would Anne Frank have thought of you?’” John Smith, third year biochem major said. “I thought that was bad, but then I read the prompt for the final exam: ‘God made me wrong because…’ By the time I had finished, it had really just become an apology to my parents.”
Many students were flabbergasted when they discovered their grades in the course.
“I hadn’t gotten a D since 8th grade, and that was when I took a college course. I thought I was invincible. Apparently, I am merely a man, which is kind of bullshit. At the same time, I guess I do think I took a great leap towards nirvana,” said Philip McCoy, a third year business economics major.
The two percent of the class that did pass were completely astonished.
“I emailed the professor saying that I wasn’t sure if I could handle the class, and he emailed me back to inform me that I had gotten an A and didn’t have to show up,” said Matt Johnson, second year psychology major.
Along with his astonishingly low passing rate, Professor Henderson’s office hours are also a work of their own.
“My office hours are Sunday evenings. Students come to my office and I ask them what they have done all day. They sulk and leave immediately,” Henderson said. “I hope I am carrying out a noble cause. Once people realize that they aren’t completely ‘running the show’, I think the world becomes a slightly better place.”