Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Making Friends For Selfish Reasons

I fear that one of my instructors is going to be rather hesitant in giving me a passing grade if I do not make friends at school. Here is the problem I am having. I do not want to make friends. My whole life I have not been good at making friends and it has never been an issue before.

I have always worked hard on the job and in most of my jobs I have been given promotions and extra responsibility. One of the reasons I do my job well is because I don't spend much time socializing. When I am on the clock, I work and my employers see that and I am rewarded.

One job I had at Motorolla back 10 years ago I proved to be highly productive. While my peers were producing on average 9 units of product per shift, I was able to produce 10-12 units per shift. Furthermore, my scrap rate was far below everyone else's. One of the reasons I was able to be so productive is that I never used my full break time. I would just use the bathroom when needed and grab a quick bite to eat and I would be back at work.

My last job involved not only doing the telephones like everyone else, but I was also in charge of the fax machine and handling the out of county calls. Furthermore, I had to take supervisor calls because our supervisor was either out smoking or was asleep. Making friends was never an issue because it was never a requirement.

Well now here at school this is something that I am going to have to do. My question is this: Is is morally right to make a friend solely for a self-serving objective? I would only be making friends just to pass the class and I have no interest in continuing the friendship once the class ends. In otherwords, I would be using someone.

Ethically this is something that I would have a hard time doing. I am not sure if this is something I would even be capable of, and I don't think I would like myself very much if I were able to do it.


  1. You do not have to make "Friends" you just have to be Friendly. Your teacher can't force you to have "friends" Just think of it as a Working environment. You are not Using them, you are just making acquaintances to get a job done. Think of it as Teamwork.

  2. Check your syllabus to see if 'class participation' is really part of the grade. If so, its usually not very much (~5-15%), and no more than one letter grade. Personally, I have to remind myself to smile and act in a friendly manner around humans. After years of faking congeniality, one person even mistook me for an extrovert.

  3. Even if class participation is 15%, that participation must also include answering questions in class, attendance, and other participation efforts. Any half-reasonable person won't kill your entire participation grade merely based upon one possibly deficient area. Speaking as a teaching assistant, what I look for in assigning a grade is effort. As long as the student looks like they're making an effort, they get a lot of reasonable doubt.

  4. Here's my two cents on this one, HappyCabbie:

    Hotlavatube's right: better to think of it as "making acquaintances" and "being friendly." it won't kill you or any of your classmates and it will help keep class interactions smooth. You are not taking unfair advantage of any of these people: you're all in the same boat and you all know it and you need to interact to pass.

    Make note: you don't have to, but in case you *do* make a friend, think of it as an unexpected gift.

    Good luck to you. :)

  5. Hey HC,

    I'd have to agree with some of the other commenters. I don't think it's that you "have-to" make friends with your classmates. I think it's more that your teacher is asking you to be friendly, and work with others when needed. Be apart of the team. Definitely think of it as a working enviroment if it will at all help.

    I wish you LOTS of luck with school!! Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. :)