Our student success director had a brilliant idea: get staff and faculty to talk about their failures and how they dealt with them (in a well-crafted 2-minute video). As it so happens, I keep my diplomas framed behind a wall of framed rejection letters (as you can see in the video). Every once in a while, a student will ask, “Are those framed emails” (most rejections these days are in the form of an email). I encourage them to take up and read, those are just a sampling of many rejection letters I received from grad schools and publishers while I was “earning” those diplomas.
Here’s one story of a time as an undergrad when I thought I had it all under control, but completely botched and bumbled another person’s work. I’m still grateful that she confronted me directly and questioned whether I was the kind of person capable of doing graduate-level work. It really made me pause and re-think everything.
Here is another video of my colleague—Dr. Harry Bleattler—talking about when he got expelled from college.