By Thomas Gentile
About a month ago, freshmen became frenzied over the idea of selecting their own classes. Professors attempted to help by showing PowerPoint presentations on how to do this and freshman seminar classes did the same. But we all overlooked one very important point — we had another month to go until we actually pick.
As time progressed, everyone began to calm down and not stress out. But as the date grows nearer, we realize that we have overlooked another big problem — freshmen are dead last to select classes. This means that right now there are few classes open while those that are still open are the ones held at inconvenient times.
For instance, I pick my classes on Nov. 17. Class selection began in the middle of October. Even though I am taking a large amount of freshmen basic classes, upperclassmen might have to take them too. And there are still limited seats to begin with for many of the core requirements.
So as the great LeBron James said, “What should I do?” Should I accept my role as a freshman, or should I disappear from campus? Should I take a semester at a community college that will have available classes for my core? Should I stop listening to my friends who tell me everything is going to be alright? Well maybe not, they are my friends. What should I do, Rider?
This pecking order has dealt me very few cards, and by the looks of it, I am going to have a class schedule that starts at 8 a.m. and ends at 8 p.m. This really helps a freshman who should be trying to stay active on campus so he has fun here and wants to come back next year. I would assume that Rider wants me to stay.
I just feel worse for those who are undecided and pick late as well because I have a declared major and can take the other core requirements for that major, while others are stuck with the scarce supply of liberal arts classes.
Yes, this is a very big change from high school to college, but a “baptism by fire” or “rite of passage” approach will help no one in this scenario. This is simply going to waste my money taking classes I do not need by signing up for something just for the credits. But more stress is just another welcome experience that I do so love, right along with breaking my legs or watching the Red Sox win.
The only solution that should not sound too drastic to administration is opening more classes at more opportune times. For instance, I do not want my last resort for Persuasive Writing for Media to be a 3 hour, once-a-week night class.
Picking classes in college feels like I have even less control as compared to when I was simply given my classes at the beginning of the semester back in high school. At least then I knew I needed to take these classes and that I would get everything I needed.
In the end, I just hope to be able to get some core requirements out of the way this spring. Please Rider, do not make me want to take my talents to another college.