By Anonymous Students, senior, English
Like many students, one of the biggest issues I have faced during my undergraduate career has been my academic advisement. I didn’t have a strong relationship with my general-assigned adviser, and I was never correctly informed on how to get my English degree finished on time. Now I have to take one more course over the summer and won’t be able to walk until the December 2019 graduation ceremony.
While taking my general education courses, I was not informed that I had to take four semesters of a foreign language until I met with my in-department faculty adviser some 60+ credit hours into my major. This, as you can imagine, put me behind my academic schedule. I have always struggled with foreign language courses. In high school, I barely passed my Spanish classes and dreaded taking them in college.
From day one, I struggled through my foreign language classes and barely passed each level. I got to the end of my third semester and was hanging on by a thread. I had met with my professor, done the extra credit work, got a tutor and was still worried that I wasn’t going to pass. This class was especially important, because if I didn’t pass it, I would be kept from graduating.
I missed passing by one point. I was furious. After all the work and time I put in to trying to finish, I missed it by a single point. I am now, unfortunately, retaking it this semester. The problem that I have now is that I will be finished with all of my other classes at the end of this semester, but still have one Spanish class to take over the summer. I was really hoping that I would be able to walk in the spring with all of my friends, but after failing that class, which wasn’t actually a failing grade since I got a D+ instead of a C-, I have to wait until this coming fall to officially graduate and receive my degree.
At other schools, colleges and universities, if a student had so many credits close to the required amount and were extremely close to graduating, then that student could walk in the spring with everyone else and finish their summer class afterwards; the school just withheld your diploma until the class was completed. For those of us that live out of state, it is extremely inconvenient to wait an entire semester for the graduation ceremony.
Technically I can receive my diploma in September if I pass this class, but walking in graduation is an important milestone that should be participated in not delayed to the point of inconvenience for the student. If anything, I believe that the school should make a small ceremony for those of us that finish over the summer instead of making us wait. Four months is a lot of life between finishing a degree and waiting to walk. Until that day, I have no idea where I will be, and I don’t want to chance missing out on that opportunity.