I have this student.
First class last term we were talking about the job hunting process. She commented that "well I know this isn't fair but I am probably going to have an advantage, you know, because of my looks. I hate to say it, but being attractive makes a difference."
I kept on my best teacher face but I remember thinking to myself that I hadn't actually considered this girl really attractive. Eyes a little close together maybe, nose a little big, a few pounds, and well those were sort of knock knees...there were far, far prettier girls in the class. I was taken aback a bit by her comment.
Over the course of the term I got to know this student. I eventually realized that there wasn't any vanity involved, no stuck up ego, it's just that somewhere along the line she had been brought up to just like herself. She enjoyed herself, she could laugh at herself. As student, and not a particularly good student, she had a great attitude. Nearly fail her, and I would get an email back "Great feedback Barb, really appreciate the trouble you took to explain this to me. Now I know what I need to do." And you know, the next assignment I saw she actually had taken it all to heart and I could see the changes she made.
You just couldn't get this kid down. Unlike nearly everyone her age somehow this girl understood how not to take it personally, it was my comments on the work, not on her.
By the end of the term I started to notice things. How this student was always so well-groomed, well-dressed, good appropriate make-up, she took care of herself. She just took care of herself.
Last class I took her aside and told her that when she went job hunting I would give her a reference.
Not that she might need it, such an attractive girl already has an edge.