Back in the 1990’s I was a graduate student at San Diego State University working on an MBA in management. I took lots of exciting courses like statistics, accounting, business performance management, marketing and business ethics. Most of the classes were small and we got to know our professors fairly well. I did a couple of internships during those years and I remember a certain offer by one of my professors to do an internship with him during the summer after I graduated.

Professor Smith (not his real name) had asked another student initially, but when I expressed an interest he suggested she and I could work together on the project. The other student, let’s call her Ellen, was in my business ethics class the semester before. She was also involved in some student organization that I participated in, so we had seen each other around quite a bit.

To my surprise it turned out that she was not a very ethical person and she didn’t like me for some reason. I found out she had lied about me to Professor Smith. On the day of the graduation ceremony, I saw Professor Smith at the faculty reception. He told me how disappointed he was that I wasn’t going to participate in his internship project that summer. What? This was news to me and I asked him where he got this information. He said Ellen told him that I didn’t have time to be involved in the project. I told him that wasn’t true, but I was too shocked to do anything about it and he didn’t seem to know what to say either. Being rather naïve at the time I didn’t even follow up on it. To this day I don’t even know if he ever confronted her about the lie she told.

It’s all in the past and I don’t think I missed out on anything. Funny how some moments from the past just suddenly come to mind.