Linguistics Teaching Assistant Louis Abbot finally earned his Ph.D. after six long years of being a candidate. Like most NYU teacher’s assistants, Abbot has been described by students as humble and approachable — an easy grader and definitely worthy of a chili pepper on Rate My Professor. However, after the completion of his dissertation titled, “The Morphosyntactic Structures and Universal Grammar of the Austronesian Languages,” students noticed a remarkable change in the once humble TA.
“We used to just call him Louis, but now he won’t answer questions unless we call him Dr. Abbot. He even passed out a revised syllabus last week, but the only difference was that he added doctor to his name,” junior Catherine Perosi said.
Other students were impressed with how Abbot’s appearance has improved. New earmuffs replaced his beanie with loose threads. His signature backpack, which led people to mistake him for an undergrad, transformed into a messenger bag, perfect for carrying assignments that will no longer be weighted. Dunkin’ Donuts cups were replaced with Think Coffee and Argo Tea — true signs of a sophisticated palate.
Some students suspected that their papers were suddenly being graded harsher and that their participation was unappreciated.
“I proposed a theory on the morphology of the adjective ‘pretentious,’ but he said it was clearly incorrect and just moved on,” senior James West said. “I used to get A’s on all my assignments, but now he nitpicks on every little thing. I’m glad he’s got his life together, but I miss the old Louis.”
Email Mai Tran at [email protected]