While scrolling through the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Bookstore website’s typical assortment of overpriced textbooks, students of Professor Derek Hammel’s introductory business administration class were surprised to see Scott Adams’ 2006 Dilbert collection “Try Rebooting Yourself” on the list.
The collection of knee-slappingly relatable business gags was notable not only for its snarky title, but for its comparatively cheap $9.99 price point. Amidst the $200 textbooks with dry, education-focused names, “Try Rebooting Yourself” was an oasis of both humor and savings.
“The only book we need for this class is ten bucks and full of comics? Nice!” exclaimed freshman business major Brett McMullan as he fist-bumped The DailyER reporter conducting the interview. “‘Dilbert’ kinda sounds like something my dad would read though. I hope I can find some SparkNotes.”
Professor Hammel’s choice of textbook certainly pleased his students. But with some members of the UNL community questioning the educational value of such a book, The DailyER tracked down Hammel and asked him some tough questions.
“I know some of you might wonder how I can teach a class based entirely around a comic book,” he said. “But ‘Dilbert’ is one of the defining business works of our time.”
“I mean, just think about all those classic characters: Wally, Alice, the Pointy-Haired Boss, Dogbert, Catbert, Ratbert…” Hammel’s voice trailed off as he gazed wistfully at the thousands of cut-out Dilbert comic strips lining his office walls.
With Hammel deeply fixed in a “Dilbert”-induced daydream, The DailyER reporter glanced around his office, taking in the sights of hundreds of “Dilbert” toys, posters and other merchandise, as well as Hammel’s own upturned tie. While his teaching methods remain up for debate, one thing is clear: this guy really likes “Dilbert.”