Post Classifieds

Cancelled classes plague liberal arts

By JACK WALSWORTH/ VN NEWS EDITOR
On March 24, 2015

Ah, registration season.

It’s the time of year when engineering and science students worry and wonder, “Will I get the labs I want in time?” And when many of us ask, “Will – fill in professor’s name here – class be open?”

I remember as a naïve freshman thinking that one of my literature classes was going to fill up so I logged on like everyone else did right at midnight.

Like I said: naïve.

During registration night, you’ll see several tweets of happiness or defeat.

You’ll see students complain about the on-campus Internet or the fact that TitanConnect always just so happens to pick registration night to freeze.

Sure, registration night gets better as students get older – upperclassmen do get priority – and yes, we’ve come along way from the days of registration in “Back to School” starring Rodney Dangerfield. (Seriously, if you haven’t seen this movie, watch it. It’s how some of our parents registered for classes).

But you know what? As a liberal arts student, I dread registration night for a different reason.

You see, I’m the kind of student who likes to be structured.

What I mean by that is I like to start planning my schedule for the upcoming semester as soon as the course catalog is released.

I always check and see which classes satisfy which requirement and which professor is teaching what.

The beauty of being a liberal arts student is the wide variety of classes I can choose from.

This is also the downfall of being a liberal arts student.

I know some of the classes I want to take (that also count towards my major) simply aren’t going to run.

So when registration night comes along, to me, it’s often a realization that I’m going to register for a class despite the fact that I know there’s a good chance that it’s not going to be offered.

During my time at UDM, I’ve had at least a half dozen classes I wanted to take get cancelled because of low enrollment. One class, Sports Writing, has been cancelled twice.

But I register for the classes anyway. I’m not sure why but I’ve gotten more hopeful over the semesters even though I know that the schedule I have on registration night is probably going to look different when August comes around.

Will this fact change in the upcoming fall semester? I sure hope so.

I’m down to my last three English classes and have four classes left for my communications major.

If everything goes to plan, I’ll even have time for a leadership minor, but we’ll see.

I say that not to be a downer but to be realistic. For example, it would be great if I could take Mass Communications this summer.

The only problem? Of the 20 spots available, only two, including mine, are currently filled.

If that class runs, I’ll be pleasantly shocked, to say the least.

I would imagine that this would be tough on professors, as well.

All those ideas for a class, the books to assign and lectures to cover gone because not enough students are going to register for them.

I’m not saying I have the answers or a perfect way to fix it.

All I’m saying is that one day I would love to see liberal arts students worrying about registration night as if they were a biology major or a pre-dental student.

Because if that were the case, it would mean more students are English or communication studies or philosophy or criminal justice majors.

At the end of the day, is that such a bad result?

Walsworth is VN news editor

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