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How One of My Greatest Prides Was Made Possible - Haverford Honor Code Essay

Amethyst10022 1 / -  
Dec 30, 2014   #1
The Honor Code at Haverford creates an environment of deep trust, respect, and collegiality between professors and students which, in turn, fosters open dialogue and free intellectual exchange. Talk about the conditions you think are essential to allowing this type of dialogue and exchange in both academic and non-academic settings.

In order to have open dialogue and free intellectual exchange, the aim of the Honor Code: to create an environment of mutual trust, concern, respect for oneself and others, and collegiality, has to exist.

One of the things I am most proud of is having been the Director of my college's Year-End musical called Dreams. However, I am not so much proud of having directed Dreams, nor the acclaim that came with it, than I am with the privilege of having led the board-of-directors of Dreams. This is because as cliché as it sounds, the board-of-directors of Dreams truly became a family; a group of people who looked out for, understood and trusted each other enough to be able to speak freely at all times. We gave and received encouragement and constructive criticism from each other graciously. We also learnt to complement each other; stepping up to the task when it's something we are good at and taking a step back to allow someone better to take charge, and in so doing, led the whole production team successfully. We found our family when we managed to create the environment the Honor Code does. We respected each other as individuals and one another's commitment to making Dreams successful. As open-minded individuals who saw an opportunity to learn something from every experience and person they came across, we began to see more of each others' strengths as we worked together, and deferred to another when we realized that they were more adept than ourselves. This deepened our respect for each other, both due to our respective strengths, but also due to our ability to put aside our pride and defer to another to accomplish our common purpose. This resulted in a strong sense of collegiality which later became an equally strong sense of camaraderie.

However, this doesn't mean that we didn't have any disagreements. We had multiple discordances but it never escalated enough to threaten our friendships simply because we knew that unity does not necessarily require unanimity. We trusted each other enough to be able to compromise. This, I feel, is a perfect example of the kind of environment that the Honor Code creates and the social outcomes of it.

Another social outcome is the decrease in prejudice. According to the Social Identity Theory (Tajfel 1979), the simple act of grouping results in prejudice. This is inevitable as wherever there is a large number of people, grouping will occur simply because birds of a feather flock together. However, according to the Realistic Conflict Theory, prejudice can be overcome by giving the different groups superordinate goals, or in laymen terms, a common purpose. As Haverford consists of a lot of people, grouping, and therefore, prejudice, is inevitable. But, the Honor Code gives everyone a common purpose by giving them the same aim: to create and maintain an environment of trust and respect. Hence, it becomes a superordinate goal and breaks down grouping and prejudices. This will make people more open-minded to each other, making it easier for them to accept each other and their perspectives which in turn give people the ability to speak freely.

With this kind of openness in the community, free intellectual exchange will occur. Students will be bolder in asking questions as they know that professors and fellow students alike will not mock or dismiss their question because everybody strives to be open-minded and respectful of each other and their thoughts. They know that others will take their questions seriously and try to answer them accordingly. In the same way, people will dare to voice out their thoughts and personal opinions as they know that though others may not concur with them, they would accept and respect their opinions enough to say with a smile, "To each his own." All who participate in such debates and conversations will benefit; they will broaden their horizons and learn much. Hence not only will the community be open-minded and respectful of others, it will also be a dynamic and learning community.
rtan05 5 / 32 3  
Dec 30, 2014   #2
I like your definition of the honor code, I suggest you omit the first phrase so that you go straight to the point in your introduction.

Your first paragraph needs revising, I got lost with your first sentence from "being most proud" to " not so much proud". Although your focus on the relationship you had with the board directors may have answered parts of the prompt, I got a bit overwhelm with the happenings though. Maybe you could focus on the important events which marks your " congenial relationship" and how it relates to the honor code. The good things you've gained.

for the second paragraph, It's good that you've introduced another side like there are bad times and good times. You could state the bad and then state what you've learned and applied.

Show more of YOURSELF, than you with your peer or students in general for Haverford.( from the third paragraph, i didn't really get a picture of you and your answer for the prompt , rather I received a possibly general answer)

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