by Erin Garvey ’22
It is easy to forget the stress that comes with class registration, as it can be exciting to create a schedule in Schedule Planner. However, when the time comes to register, Providence College students wake up in a panic, worrying that they will not get the classes that they have so carefully planned their schedules around. At the end of three years of stress, seniors should not have to feel this sense of panic. Rather, because of the little time that is left, seniors should have priority to seats in a class.
Senior year is crunch time. It is the time for capstones, special topics seminars and classes needed to complete core requirements. This last year of our college experience is dependent on getting into necessary courses, so when those classes fill too quickly and options deplete, panic and anxiety set in.
While some majors do offer prioritized pre-registration for seniors, others do not. It is this inconsistency that leads to much unnecessary stress on students as they enter their final year. When it comes to actual registration day, classes might already be nearly full due to other pre-registration processes, including athlete registration.
Additionally, this year’s seniors are facing issues in registering for classes in their own majors. In the psychology department, for example, students who might be on the path towards a graduate degree or job in the field of psychology are not permitted to take any classes within the department if the students have already fulfilled the requirements that those courses offer. In this case, it is actually the juniors who are receiving priority treatment. There should be an adequate number of seats available within classes of every major department so that students in those majors are able to take the courses that interest them and relate to their future careers. For seniors especially, this field experience could begin shortly after the spring semester ends.
Each senior should be able to sit down with their advisor and submit a complete list of classes they need for that semester. This will allow administrators and faculty to learn how many students need a seat in specific classes and make the necessary changes to allow for maximum students. Currently, the system allows for an extremely limited number of seats in each class, preventing most students from having the ability to register. Oftentimes, this forces students to send emails in an attempt to persuade professors to open extra seats in the class.
This is not how seniors should be spending their last year at PC. We should not be begging for seats in classes, rather we should be focusing on work and activities to celebrate our last year.
We have all been through the rigorous registration process for three years, and we have all had to deal with the dilemma of not getting a seat in a desired class. While everyone cannot get all the classes they may want, senior year is not the time to be scrambling to fill a schedule.
Of course, while there is no guarantee that this demand will be met in the coming weeks as we approach spring registration, this template should be considered for future registration periods.
With more students being admitted and more classes in high demand than in previous years, it is imperative that each academic department take a look within their offered classes to see if this is really the most productive way to continue for their students’ sake.
Seniors have had to deal with this frustrating registration process, and it is time for much-needed change. With the world changing around us, it only makes sense to continuously look within our own systems to see what needs adjustment.