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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    When A Journalist Gets the (F)acts

    To the Editor:

    I am writing in response to the Op-Ed piece written by Adam Zimmerman that appearedlast week titled ‘When The Professor Gets an F’. The article stated,’four days after the start of Passover and one day after Easter Sunday,Professor Dale Drueckhammer scheduled a midterm exam for his CHE 322 students.’

    Throughout the article I am repeatedly given credit for the scheduling of thisexam. While I would like to take credit for having such powers, I, in fact,did not set the date and time of this exam, just as I did not set the meetingtime and place for the class, the final exam schedule, etc.

    The exam dates and times were decided before the beginning of the semesterand were published in the class schedule. I am not actually sure who makes thesedecisions and I cannot speak for them regarding the justification of the examdates. I suspect that if Mr. Zimmerman had searched out this person, they couldhave explained to him the constraints that resulted in the CHE 322 exam beingscheduled when it was.

    In response to his demand that I give the class an honest explanation, hadhe done any investigating at all, he would have found that I explained thison the first day of class and on at least one occasion since.

    I fully realize that I should not hold a student newspaper to the same standardsas the New York Times or even Newsday. However, the writing and publicationof an accusatory piece based on fabricated information, false assumptions, and’a source tells me’ assertion, with no apparent effort to gather facts,is certainly not up to the standards I would expect of a publication that servesand represents Stony Brook.

    Responsible reporting demands more investigation than simply looking up thedefinition of ‘vacation’. Perhaps Mr. Zimmerman should look up thedefinition of ‘journalism’. Based on Mr. Zimmerman’#146;s statementof ‘I yield you the floor’ I expect to see a clarification in thenext issue of the ‘Statesman’. If you need a title for this piece,may I suggest ‘When a Journalist Gets the F(acts).’

    With Best Regards,
    Dale Drueckhammer

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