GREENVILLE – One night last October, a group of students gathered in the library at East Carolina University to prepare for an accounting exam the next day – but they hit a roadblock with one problem.
So they decided to email their professor, Dr. Douglas Schneider, at 10:46 p.m.
Little did they expect what happened next.
“As it turns out, Dr. Schneider was in his office that late, and he got the email,” ECU Chancellor Cecil Staton says in the accompanying video. “And he thought to himself, ‘Rather than trying to explain this problem, I’m just going to walk over to the library.’
“So here they are after 11 o’clock at night, Dr. Schneider shows up, and the students are just in awe that a professor would think so highly of them that at that late at night, he would come to the library and help them work through their problem and prepare for their assignment the next day.”
One of the students, Marissa Flood, tweeted about the professor’s 11:10 p.m. visit – and her tweet went viral, with almost 39,000 “likes” and attention even from ABC News.
Chancellor Staton sees broader significance in Schneider’s attention – at any hour – to his students.
“It reflects an attitude that’s found all across this campus,” Staton says. “There’s something special about ECU – we’re not a university that brags about the people we exclude…. At ECU, we brag about our students that we include, and we brag about how well they succeed.
“There are so many people like Doug Schneider across this university who are making a difference in the lives of students. And by changing the life of a student, we change their trajectories, we change their families, their communities, our region, this state, and the world.”