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Staff/Faculty ID
Noel Cornwallis
Noel Cornwallis
Portrayed by: Malcolm McDowell
First appearance: "Alternative History of the German Invasion"
Last appearance: "Intro to Knots"
Date of birth: Unknown


Are you actually suggesting that a professor at Greendale would set up an elaborate campus-wide ruse just to teach seven students a lesson?
— Professor Noel Cornwallis, "Alternative History of the German Invasion".

Professor Cornwallis.
Professor Noel Cornwallis is a professor at Greendale Community College who teaches Eastern European History. He was once taught at Oxford but lost his position due to a scandal involving a tryst with a coed. His first appearance was in the Season Four episode "Alternative History of the German Invasion". He is portrayed by actor Malcolm McDowell.

Character history[]

Noel Cornwallis career at Oxford University ended after 20 years when he had an affair with a co-ed. He was hired by Greendale Community College in 2013 as the scandal left him very few options. On his first day of class he introduced himself to his students by mentioning he was a direct descendant of General Sir Charles Cornwallis. His first lesson involved looking at history from a multitude of vantage points including the victors and the defeated. For the first test, he challenged the class to look at history as if it had been written by "the vanquished". This appealed to a German student in his class named Reinhold who was very amused at the idea.

S04E04-Cornwallis victors
We all know the quote, but what does it mean?
A study group also taking the class came to appreciate the assignment as well. Their fellow classmates had held a protest against them because they selfishly monopolized a study room. Cornwallis personally went to the cafeteria to find these students. They didn't show up for class and as a result failed the test he had scheduled. When the group's leader Jeff Winger saw Cornwallis he incorrectly assumed the professor orchestrated the protest to teach them a lesson. Cornwallis was stunned at such a ridiculous theory and realized he made a big mistake accepting a job at the school. After telling everyone the real reason he tracked them down he wondered aloud if he could get out of his contract with a Greendale ("Alternative History of the German Invasion").

S04E04-Cornwallis Oh my God
Oh my God! I've made a horrible mistake!
It was revealed Professor Cornwallis gave Annie Edison the answers to a test in return for her letting him rub her feet ("Intro to Felt Surrogacy"). Over the Winter holidays, Professor Cornwallis was invited to a Christmas party at Jeff Winger's apartment. When Cornwallis arrived he mentioned he couldn't stay long as his daughter was in town for a visit. He rebuffed all of the study group's attempts to please him insulting them frequently while doing so. He called Jeff out on his insincere flattery and informed him that the group received a 'C-' on their paper. Although Jeff was delighted with the grade Annie was not. Cornwallis overheard Jeff calling him a "pompous Anglo" and let them know he was changing the grade to an 'F'.

S04E10-Cornwallis drink
In America, don't you mix it with cherry
pop or Monterrey Jack cheese?
While the group went into another room, Cornwallis decided to have fun with them and tied himself to a chair. When they came back he pretended Kevin/Ben Chang was responsible. As he expected, Jeff saw this as an opportunity to get Cornwallis to change their grade. Cornwallis amused himself by analyzing each of the study group members and trying to sow dissension between them. He upped the ante by promising an 'A' to the person who frees him while failing the others. Dean Pelton's unexpected arrival briefly disrupted Cornwallis' game allowing him to free himself. Cornwallis stirred the pot further by suggesting someone in the group untied him. Jeff had enough of his mind games and tied the professor to the chair with the help of the other study group members.

4x10-Cornwallis Chang captive
Let go of me you big, hairy nutter!
As they started unwrapping Christmas gifts that Kevin had poorly tied with ribbon, both Jeff and Annie had a sudden realization. They accused Cornwallis of tying himself up the first time which he owned up to. He admitted he did it because he was lonely and that his daughter wasn't actually in town. The Study Group's invitation saved him from being alone on the holidays and updating his suicide note. He agreed to give them all a 'C+' but remained tied to the chair for the rest of the party drinking his scotch with a straw ("Intro to Knots"). Months later Cornwallis stopped caring about teaching his students and his final assignment was simply having his students pick any moment from history and tell him about it ("Basic Human Anatomy").

S04E10-Cornwallis Scotch and straw
I suppose I could give you a "C" ... plus.

External link[]

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