Tests Are Not Just Academic

Aug 11, 2017

“Graduation is an exercise.”

That was the clever headline I put over a storyboard I submitted for a photo class in college. My photos showed the daily grind students plod through to reach the holy grail — a college degree.

Looking back, I’d say the biggest obstacle was passing tests. Lots of tests. I remember cramming for tests … and trying to guess what will be asked.

Students are always looking for an edge. Students like Henry Lynch, for example. He found a short cut — through an air duct. And perhaps he deserves an A for effort and creative thinking and his rigorous pursuit of knowledge.

Police said Lynch and a fellow student at the University of Kentucky in Lexington sneaked into a third-floor office to steal a final exam. He used an air duct to gain access.

What they didn’t expect was the professor returning to his office at 2 a.m.

Well, they got caught and now face another test — in court, where they no doubt will learn some life lessons.

Part of me thinks the air duct crawl was a bit rigorous, but he would walk away knowing the answers to questions deemed significant by the prof.

Isn’t that the goal, after all?

No, no, I won’t condone cheating. The culprits deserve whatever they get, because they failed the big final exam that we all face. 

Tests also measure a student’s integrity and attitude and dedication to the educational process,  and eventually learning — about yourself.

And, even if you ace all your tests, graduation is still an important exercise.

Even if you didn’t drag yourself through an air duct.

I’m Lonny Cain, and that’s my perspective.