Professor Eric Leifson teaches history at Marquette University, and he has found that his department has struggled to spark students’ interests in history.
“I feel like most students just power through their history classes without retaining any of that information, which is a real shame because there is so many fascinating stories and events that you can learn through history,” Leifson told the Golden Seagull. “That’s why I decided to shake things up a bit in the classroom by incorporating some dank memes.”
According to Leifson’s search history (provided to the Golden Seagull by our friends over at Anonymous), he googled a few questions over the weekend that sparked this change, such as “What do kids like?” “What is cool?” and “How do I reach these kids?” Eventually, Leifson must have read something about memes because the next few hundred pages included classic memes such as Rick Roll, Awkward Penguin, Yo Dawg, and Foul Bachelor Frog to name a few.
“I can tell that it’s been really well-received,” Leifson told the Seagull. “During class, I see students hiding their faces trying not to laugh.”
“Oh, that was purely out of discomfort" said Linda Crosswald, a student in Leifson’s HIST 1001 class. She has a different perspective from Mr. Leifson. “Yeah, no one thought it was funny. Like, at all. Like, it sucks because before the memes I, like, really liked his class.”
Other students had similar stories to Linda’s, like Jessie Platt, who said he "was interested in minoring or maybe even doing a double major with history. After the memes, he said he would stick to his Theater degree.”
“I know he’s trying to connect with us or whatever, but I don’t even know what half of these are," Sophomore Grace Lewin said "Like, what is that one with the wolf and the color wheel background? I had never seen that before, and it was just horrifying.“
Leifson insists that the memes are a success, even though the numbers suggest otherwise. Since he has started using the memes, half of the class has withdrawn from the course. Attendance has gotten so low that there are some classes where only two or three students show up, but Leifson says he is not concerned.
“I will use memes in my lectures until the day I die.”