I'm a master's student at a world-wide top business school. In one subject (a subject that related to my undergraduate specialization) I had a very good professor. He researches in the same field I want to conduct research in later, so we had quite some conversations about research, which were really interesting. I answered his questions actively in class, got one of the highest grades in his exam, he also praised how interesting my presentation was, which made up 40% of the final grade (in short, I doubt that me being 'dumb' or a bad student is the issue). In our last class together, he told the entire class that we can always e-mail him if we need career-related advice, or when we come to his hometown, he would be glad to have a drink with us, and that we should add him on Linkedin.

I added him on Linkedin, as I would have loved to keep up the professional relationship, especially when it comes to my master's thesis later, I would have loved to have him as my advisor. He then turned down not only my Linkedin request, but the whole class'. In addition, when one of us emails him about professional matters, he doesn't answer. I asked him about a certain specialization I was thinking on doing in his field, as I wanted to hear his opinion, and got ignored, but other classmates told me their e-mails got ignored by him as well. To be honest, I'm pretty disappointed, as he was the professor our class had the best relationship with. The classes were always very interactive and fun, and all of us got pretty good grades at the end, so I really don't understand his behavior and it makes me think. We also were a quite familiar group as our class is really small with only 30 students. Do you think we as a class did something wrong, or is he the one being odd?

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    There is nothing in your post that suggests you did anything wrong. It is possible, however, that the professor is going through some life crisis. Someone local (professor, dean) might know.
    – Buffy
    Nov 23, 2022 at 12:18
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    And please don't forget Covid is not gone yet.
    – Nobody
    Nov 23, 2022 at 12:23
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    You did not do anything wrong, but he did not do anything wrong either. That is just his decision not to reply to students' emails.
    – Neuchâtel
    Nov 23, 2022 at 12:28
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    Time scale of the facts exposed here?
    – EarlGrey
    Nov 23, 2022 at 12:40
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    None of the comments/answers addresses that the professor wasn't just ghosting OP, instead turned down the students' linkedin invites after telling those same students to send him one - if this is how it really went down. That does make the professor seem fake, but it's so odd that there must be some misunderstanding. Nov 23, 2022 at 14:44

2 Answers 2


Don't overthink it. The professor might have 259 new emails each morning and he is simply not able to answer all of them even if he wanted to. (He might not even have checked his linkedin for many weeks).


Of course I cannot tell you for sure why your professor acts like this, but I can tell you one thing: Professors are always busy. Always.

You may have had a good relationship with him and he was interested in you, but this was last term, last year. Now there are other students he has to take care of, other classes. He has to give lectures, correct exams, visit conferences. No time to deal with some people who are not his students any more.

I don't think that you have done anything wrong. Perhaps he really liked to work with you, and that's why he proposed to stay in touch. Now he has realized that it just does not work.

Don't worry about him. You will find other opportunities.

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