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Email to a teacher at CUNY about privacy between students.

Greetings,

First and foremost, and most importantly, I treat all staff at CUNY with the utmost respect at all times. I love CUNY. I have gained tremendously from being a student at CUNY. I understand everyone is doing their best under the circumstances. I am confident that you are a phenomenal teacher because all my teachers at CUNY have been outstanding. Thank you very much for the feedback. 

I like to live my life on the cautious side (that is the understatement of the century). It’s one thing to interact with students at school with the teachers supervising, no last names, and no contact information is shared. My issue is interacting with students without the teacher supervising. My other concern is the school sharing student’s personal information with me and vice versa. 

I’m 100% willing to go above and beyond to succeed in your class. I’m studying and doing homework today for 8 to 10 hours and the school hasn’t started yet. I’m studying for classes that I’m not taking for another semester or two in addition to all the schoolwork I have to turn in this semester (math and bio). I’m going to ace math and bio. 

To stay on the cautious side I have contacted various CUNY offices and staff to figure out how to continue to succeed at school and get past a few hurdles. Not just in your class. In all my classes. 

To illustrate: 

1. I’m trying to avoid any student’s personal information nor do I want any students having my personal information. If it happens, there is nothing I can do about it besides erase it. I’m going on the record that I don’t want it. 

2. I’m trying to avoid signing up for any group chats with students.

3. I’m trying to avoid interacting with students online.

I’m a 44 years young homeless person. If I have any misunderstanding with a student, I’m gone. I’m walking on eggshells to enhance my life. I don’t want to jeopardize the little I have left. I don’t drink. I don’t smoke. I don’t party at all. I don’t have a criminal record. I just want to get a diploma. I’m not looking to socialize with students. When I do interact with students at school, I treat them with the same respect that I treat the staff. 

I 100% respect your position. I’m not going to say I understand exactly how this class is going to unfold because I haven’t taken it. I am trying to figure out how I can function as a one-man play instead of a full cast and crew. 

If you look at CUNY first (attached), front and center it’s talking about sexual harassment between students. That is why I’m taking every precaution possible to not even put myself in a situation where there can be a misunderstanding. I was able to achieve a 4.0 GPA after 27 credits during my first year at school without any issues.

Before I started at CUNY people at HRA told us if we even look in a woman’s direction that it could be considered leering and we could have our public assistance case FTC. Fail to comply. Looking in a women’s direction can result in our food supply, SNAP, cash assistance, etc. being shut off. Then the staff at the welfare job office would tease us every day and yell FTC over and over. I do not want to go back there. 

Now I’m at CUNY and it’s a similar situation. It says right on the CUNY.edu homepage “combating sexual misconduct.” I’m combating it by staying out of any situation that puts me in direct contact with student’s personal information, online conversations, group chats, etc. 

I keep to myself. I make the best of all situations. I feel like at this point I have no choice but to explain myself. I am in such a delicate position in life, I can not be responsible for how other people act and focus on my studies. 

There are a lot of people at CUNY who are connected and have pull. I’m not connected and I don’t have any pull. If I don’t keep myself on the perfect path at school I can be tossed out of CUNY in one second flat. I don’t want that to happen. 

I signed up for extra classes so at the end of the day I can still earn 12 credits and be a full-time student if I drop this class. I don’t want to drop the class. I just wanted to let you know, it’s not a huge pressure situation. 

I have the utmost respect for you and all CUNY teachers. I can’t imagine how much competition there is to get a job at CUNY. Especially these days.

Hopefully, there will be a simple solution. If not I would be happy to take the class with you when school is back in person. 

Thank you and have a great day.

Ever upward,

Mark Pine

I love CUNY.

By Mark Pine

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