The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Right-handed world leaves lefties struggling

Students+like+Danielle+Stoddart+can+often+feel+isolated+because+of+the+lack+of+desks+designed+for+left-handed+students.%0D%0APhoto+illustration+by+Jordan+Hess%2FThe+Collegian
Students like Danielle Stoddart can often feel isolated because of the lack of desks designed for left-handed students. Photo illustration by Jordan Hess/The Collegian

By Karen Gavis/managing editor

Several TCC lefties found a voice on Facebook and aired their frustrations with the college’s right-handed desks.

Students like Danielle Stoddart can often feel isolated because of the lack of desks designed for left-handed students.
Photo illustration by Jordan Hess/The Collegian

“I would appreciate it if there were more desks for left-handed students at the NW Campus. There are about three in my math class,” Charisma Mia Cruz posted. “Other than that, in all my other classes, the desks are for right-handed students.”

Cruz signed the post “Sincerely, a left-handed student” and was soon joined by fellow TCC lefties who said they experienced the same problem.

“We need left-handed desks at NE Campus too!” Danielle Lee-Stoddart posted. “I’m tired of my arm hanging off the desk to write.”

Later, a jokester joined the discussion suggesting that Cruz simply learn how to write with her right hand. However, Cruz was not joking.

“My binder barely fits on my desk, much less my arm. My elbow hangs off the desk,” she said. “There is never a comfortable way to write.”

Cruz said she has not asked her teacher directly about acquiring a left-handed desk but did mention it once when the class was discussing what they liked and disliked about the college. When Cruz brought up her grievance, all the right-handed students looked around the classroom and said “that’s weird.”

“I understand that the majority of students are right-handed,” Cruz said. “Therefore, they overlook the fact that there are not many lefties and that we would settle for right-handed desks.”

NE ethics instructor Mark Reed said lefties are perceived as odd in society, and, somehow, the left has even become associated with the devil.

“I am no authority on left-handers and have no idea where the expression came from,” he said. “But, clearly, sinister comes

from Latin, sinistrous, meaning to the left.”

Stoddart said lefties have an endless list of things inconvenient to them that righties do not consider such as shaking hands, winding a watch (whose winder is on the right side) and eating next to a right-handed person where they would bump elbows.

“Most doorknobs and handles are on the right, so us lefties have learned to open doors with our right hands,” she said. “Toilet tissue holders on the walls are always on the right side. Occasionally, you may find one on the left, but that was probably installed by a leftie.”

Stoddart said she does not bother asking for a left-handed desk.

“I’ve just learned to adapt,” she said. “I might run across a left-handed desk once in a blue moon, and when I do, it’s like I’ve just won a million bucks!”

TCC manager of interior design Patti Bass said left-handed desks are available, and the college can supply those upon request. TCC generally supplies about 10 percent of tablet armchairs in classrooms for left-handed students.

“Occasionally, we have had instructors request more or less based on what they have seen,” she said.

NE disability support services senior office assistant Jamie Meade, who is left-handed, said DSS has never had a student ask them about a left-handed desk. And it is not something their office would handle because being left-handed is not a disability.

Although speaking from her own experience in school, Meade said left-handed students either just dealt with or asked the teacher if they could obtain a left-handed desk for them.

“I was just used to it,” she said. “You just adapted.”

NE DSS coordinator Denise Hill said teachers can order left-handed desks from the warehouse.

“They just have to put in an order for it,” she said. “And teachers can do that online.”

Stoddart said her parents tried everything to get her to write with her right hand, but she always gravitated to the left. She would practice writing with her right hand, but it did not feel natural.

“I’ve just learned to accept who I am, and I am glad to be a leftie,” she said.



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