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Professor Suspicious After Student's Grandfather Dies for the Fifth Time This Semester


Photo by Carolyn Lim / The Daily Pennsylvanian

Econ 264 Professor Michael Daniels grew suspicious after tragedy struck one of his students, Rebecca Burton (C ‘20), for the fifth time this semester, preventing her from completing her second midterm paper.

Professor Daniels said the first time Burton reported the death of her grandfather, he didn’t think anything of it. “Grandparents age, things happen, it’s the circle of life,” Daniels said. “Sure, it was convenient timing, with the first midterm scheduled for the next day, but the universe works in mysterious ways.”

After the second, third, fourth, and fifth times, however, Daniels became unsure of his student’s integrity. “I mean, two deaths—fine. Most people have two grandfathers. Three deaths? Okay. Divorce rates are up these days, you can never be sure. Four deaths? A little weird, but who am I to define what it means to be a conventional family in this day and age? But five deaths? Now I don’t know what to believe.”

Daniels remains at a loss. “I don’t want to be insensitive to her situation, especially with the third midterm coming up next week. It doesn’t really matter though—with so many of my current students hospitalized for the bubonic plague, I’m going to have to schedule a make-up exam anyway.”