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Case of the Redistribution of Wealth

Category 4: Cheating, Dishonesty, Plagiarism


Manny is an undergraduate student and an entrepreneur who has returned to school to complete a B.S. degree he left unfinished years ago. Although not a stellar student, he has a solid "C" and has struck up a friendly relationship with Professor Philly, who is newly arrived to an East Coast School from a former republic of the Soviet Union. During one of their conversations after class, Manny mentions he is ordering a significant amount of lobster from his brother-in-law in Maine and offers some to Professor Philly at cost. Manny makes it clear he wants no favors in the course from Professor Philly, and Professor Philly makes it clear he would not allow this to affect his grading of Manny.

Stage 1

What action do you think WAS taken?

A. Professor Philly accepted the gift, since it was not a monetary loss to Manny, and it was easy for Philly to give a "B" to Manny in this class since he performed better than in his previous courses. No one questioned the grade.

B. Professor Philly said no to the generous offer, even though he had fewer resources in American than Manny.

C. Professor Philly accepted the offer quickly, which led Manny to provide him with other amenities from his numerous connections.

Stage 2

What actions do you think SHOULD have been taken?

A. Philly should refuse the offer under any circumstances.

B. Philly should accept the offer, and document any grade assignments carefully.

C. Philly should accept the offer only with someone to witness the agreement.

D. Philly should determine if Manny has tried to bribe other instructors.

E. Philly should try to get Manny to broaden his offer to other faculty and thus remove the connection to his grading.