Faltering economy causes classes to consolidate for fall

Some students may find class registration more difficult this semester because of cutbacks being made in the tight economy.
“There has been some consolidation of class offerings, depending on the college and the department,” said Robert Bolla, interim provost for vice president of academic affairs. “In some cases, courses with multiple sections lost a section, particularly where there are fewer students enrolling in those classes.”
Registration for next semester began this week and ends Thursday.
Junior electronic media major Katie Sullivan said she hates registration and thinks the consolidation will make it more difficult.
“Especially kids trying to get into junior and senior classes, there’s not enough room in there for people that need to get into them,” she said. “I’ve already got all my gen. eds. taken care of, and because I don’t need filler classes, I’m stuck.”
However, Bolla said the consolidation shouldn’t affect graduation.
“Students should be able to get courses they need to progress toward a timely graduation in all colleges,” he said. “Students should continue to work with their advisors in planning their class schedules.”
Bolla said other changes include some electives being offered less frequently and fewer classes being taught by part-time professors.
Sophomore psychology major Hayley Braatz said she’s had problems with classes being full in previous semesters. She said one professor even warned her class this semester that students needed to have back-ups.
“I’m a sophomore, so it’s just kind of bogus I’m still facing it as this point,” she said. “I just don’t see why they don’t offer more classes. I can take [the classes I need] later, but it’s just kind of like I’m wading in water.”
Braatz also said other students may be facing issues.
“If someone’s trying to change their major and they can’t even get into the class for that major to know if they like it – it’s a problem,” she said.
Associate Registrar Andy Kindler said things are “business as usual” in the Registrar’s office this semester, and he hasn’t seen a change from the consolidation.
“We are the ones getting the bits and pieces from campus and we put the schedule into classes,” he said. “It’s running smoothly.”
Kindler said students should contact their department chairs or deans if they have a problem with classes being offered.
Bolla said he’s not sure how much impact this change will have on university finances.
“The university is still evaluating how to address the budgetary challenges,” he said. “Consolidating classes is just part of that process.”