SUBJECT: Missing 💪 Class 😩 this 👏 Semester 👌

Dear Professor [redacted],

I am sorry to tell you that I will be unable to attend any of the lectures for your course Underwater Basket Weaving: A Qualitative Approach. It’s not that I don’t want to be there – my coach had to pull some strings to get me off the waitlist – it’s just that I have a pretty busy Water Polo schedule this semester. What with practices, traveling for games, and my photoshoot for Water Polo Monthly, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to fit it all in. As a student-athlete, I have to perform on and off the field, even if it means missing some class.

I want you to know that I’m willing to make up the work that I miss. As long as it’s easy. And doesn’t keep me up all night. My teammates rely on me for my quick reflexes and agility – it’d be unfair to them and the university if I wasn’t at peak performance because I had to stay up for an assignment.

You should also realize that because I’m telling you this in advance and jumping through the required hoops, Duke requires that you pass me. I know this might seem unfair to students who show up every day and actually do all their work, but you have to understand that without academic support, student-athletes wouldn’t be able to survive. Every day we’re out here grinding, working our minds and our bodies for the glory of Duke University. Water Polo brings dozens of dollars of revenue, and we athletes don’t see a penny of it. If a few professors have to slide us a gentleman’s C, that only seems fair.

Student-Athletes were selected to come to Duke because we bring an important aspect to campus culture. And sure, our SAT scores may be a few hundred points lower than your average Duke student, but who can quantify the prestige of winning the National Water Polo Championships? I know I can’t. What I do know is I didn’t come here to learn. I came to Polo.



p.s. I understand that participation points are part of the grade for your course. If you want you can put one of those blue duke backpacks on a chair in the back row and grade it instead. The differences should be negligible.

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