Scheduling flaw creates problem for seniors

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November 20, 2009

4:38 AM

Class restrictions prevent many students at the College of William and Mary from registering for certain courses, but rarely do those restrictions affect seniors. However, during registration last week, a number of students of the class of 2010 were forced out of Ballroom Dance after they had registered for the upcoming spring semester.

Kinesiology professor Ray McCoy, who handles the scheduling for the kinesiology and health sciences department, said the incident occurred because of an error with registration restrictions.

“It was a simple oversight during the scheduling process of the spring semester courses,” McCoy said.

In an effort to help underclassmen fulfill their general education requirement 6 requirement, many of the upperclassmen enrolled were removed from the class to make room for members of the classes of 2012 and 2013. GER requirements are usually met in students’ first two years at the College, though they are not required to be.

“They shouldn’t force people out of the class who had already signed up,” Leigh Sitler ’10, who had been registered for the course, said. “It takes a lot of time and effort to set up a schedule and make sure all your classes work, time-wise, with each other.”

According to Sitler, the reason behind the roster adjustment was upsetting.

“The explanation was that underclassmen need to get into the class to fulfill their GER 6,” Stitler said. “I am very frustrated by this incident … because I had really been looking forward to taking ballroom.”

Jennifer Bartgis ’10, another student who was removed from the class, said that upperclassmen had earned their higher registration status.

“We have been forced to wait to sign up for this class,” Bartgis said. “When we were underclassmen … the classes were always full with seniors.”

Bartgis suggested that a compromise could be reached between the seniors and the underclassmen in need of fulfilling their GER.

“I believe that the administration should create a new section for those seniors who were enrolled, or should create openings in other classes for those displaced seniors of Ballroom Bancing,” Bartgis said.

Guy Evans ’10 registered for the course on the first day of registration, but was eventually removed from the roster.

“I was disappointed when I was forcibly de-registered a few days afterward,” Evans said. “The fact that we never had the opportunity to take these classes as underclassmen and now do not have the opportunity to take them as seniors seems vaguely unfair to me.”

The College’s kinesiology department currently offers eight Ballroom Dance courses, held on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which are instructed by professor Rebecca Rushforth.

“In the future, the department will provide spots in both Ballroom I and II for seniors, juniors, sophomores and freshmen so students will have the opportunity to satisfy the GER 6 requirement with Ballroom dance.”

A new section of Ballroom Dance I will be opened for the spring semester and disenrolled seniors will have the first choice for the class.

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