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July 09, 2012 10:00 AM So Much for that German Efficiency

By Daniel Luzer

One of the common complaints about the American universities systems is that students take to damn long to finish college. Only 60 percent of full-time college students earn a bachelor’s degree in 8 years. Some colleges are now working on plans to help students get a bachelor’s degree in only 3 years.

In Germany, however, apparently one can finish college too quickly. UPI reports that:

A German university is suing a student for lost income because he finished his bachelors and masters degrees in only 20 months.
The School of Economics and Management in Essen is asking the court to make former student Marcel Pohl, 22, pay an extra $3,772 after he obtained his degrees in only three semesters instead of the usual 11, The Local.de reported Tuesday.

I’m not intimately familiar with this case, but Marcel Pohl appears to have displayed the sort of initiative that would ordinarily be quite commendable in students. He apparently received prior authorization from his university that he and several friends could take 60 required examinations by dividing lecture hours and sharing notes.

“When I got the lawsuit, I thought it couldn’t be true,” Pohl said. “Performance is supposed to be worth something.”

It is worth something. Apparently the university thinks it’s worth $3,772.

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer