New Trend: Fake College Students
Not that innocent, however, are those college students who recently got caught faking something very illegal and very insane: faking being a college student!
These culprits are popping up everywhere, on campuses around the country.
Take the rather hilarious story of George P. Burdell, an imaginary student at Georgia Tech, who has been there since 1927, thanks to his creator, Ed Smith, who received two enrollment forms and decided to play a little trick. Acting as “Burdell,” he attended all of his friend’s classes and lived on at GT even after Ed Smith graduated.
Other students adopted the Burdell identity over the years: he earned a master’s degree, faught in WWII, and was briefly the leading contender among voters for magazine’s person of the year. And he’s only a sophomore!
David Jovani Vanegas went so far as to have some fun in the sun at Six Flags with a group of students, pretending to be a Rice student himself. He played off the act for three whole semesters, claiming his mom would have been really pissed off if she found out he didn’t actually get accepted. Hmmm…I think the whole “pretending to be in college thing” would create more tension in that relationship.
“A lot of them could recall seeing Vanegas once or remember him playing Nintendo in a dorm common area.”
Not to be outdone by the men, not one, but TWO female impostors were caught at Stanford this year. Azia Kim is an 18-year-old who also felt pressure from her parents to attend college and was living as a student for 8 months, breaking into friends’ computers to delete any emails that explained weird situations that may have tipped people off. And Elizabeth Okazaki, who made it through ALL FOUR YEARS, spending most of her time studying physics in a lab and somehow got a key to the building until professors started to notice her odd behavior.
You’d think with all of the physics “research” she was doing every single day, she’d actually be making the most of her time. But, Physics Professor Leonard Susskind, one of the world’s most respected string theorists and the man Okazaki claimed to be working with, said, “As far as I know, she has no official connection with anyone in the physics department….In fact, as far as I can tell, she has a very limited knowledge of physics itself.”
Last but not least, we have Virgil Tuttle, the 48-year-old FORMER University of Cincinnati student, who just can’t keep away from his alma mater. He’s been looming around and stalking the campus and finally has a restraining order and court case against him. He still owes the school tuition money, but that hasn’t stopped him from attending classes, researching in the library, and being an all-around crazy person.
“In April 2001, an officer found him dozing in a stall in a third-floor restroom, pants around his ankles. In August 2004, they found him relaxing in a math lounge, feet up, shoes off, lights out. In May 2005, he was in the bushes not far from the police station, drunk, a half-eaten pizza lying next to him.”
CREEPY! But kind of FUNNY, TOO!
Seriously, the idea of random people faking their college identity scares the crap out of me. Anyone who does this has balls of steel. In lots of cases, it seems like parental pressure comes into play, and maybe moms and dads should loosen up on their kids when it comes to being accepted into their ideal college, so that these lost and confused human beings don’t end up feeling the need to fake it to make it.
But, in the end, anyone who fakes their college existence is just plain crazy and should be locked up immediately.
In conclusion, watch out for college student impostors, because you may be able to catch them before the school can. There could be one sitting next to you right now! If nothing else, it would give you the perfect opportunity to turn to him (or her) after they say something really dumb in class, and say, “Dude…you don’t even go here.”